There are proportionally fewer Hispanic Americans, African Americans and women in Congress than in the United States population. Existing literature prescribes a variety of explanations for this disparity including skewed nominations procedures, differing participation rates, racial gerrymandering, voting biases, and funding inequities. This study revisits one aspect of the underrepresentation issue: campaign contributions. Money has been an integral component of the electoral process since before the American Revolution and its impact on the current composition of Congress ought to be explored to a greater extent. Previous research shows that contributors rarely, if at all, discriminate on the basis of gender. This study intends to further investigate the congressional campaign funding of African Americans and provide some much needed insight regarding the campaign financing of Hispanic American candidates. Using financial and biographical data from each candidate within the 2004 and 2008 election cycles, a multiple regression model will be employed to evaluate the extent to which gender and minority status determine the distribution of congressional campaign funds independent of other electability traits considered influential by contributors (the percentage of vote received in the last election, incumbency, and the leadership position held are indications of candidate strength that affect campaign contributions). The magnitude and statistical significance of these coefficients provides further understanding into funding inequities
If this is your Honors thesis, and want to learn how to access it or for more information about readership statistics, contact us at STARS@ucf.edu
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
College of Sciences
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences; Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Cox, Jamesha, "The Influence of Campaign Contributions on Proportionality of Representation in the United States Congress" (2013). HIM 1990-2015. 1493.