State Legislators and Representation: A Data-Driven Learning Guide Go to Resource


Similar to members of the United States Congress, a state legislator's primary responsibility is to the residents in the district he or she represents. However, representatives work within a larger decision-making body, and must think about the good of the district, the good of the state, or some combination of both when writing laws. Representatives are also subject to the influence of political parties, congressional leadership, and other legislators.

The goal of this exercise is to examine state legislators' perceptions about their districts and the complex relationship between constituent preferences and the legislator's role as representative. Crosstabulations, bar charts, and frequencies will be used.

Analysis Type(s):
Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research
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