Recently Brookings, in collaboration with the American Enterprise Institute and the Campaign Finance Institute, released a free, downloadable and user-friendly version of Vital Statistics on Congress, a compilation of data on our first branch of government that we have been collecting for over three decades. We encouraged readers to download the data for their own use, and share their findings with us. We’ve been impressed by the ways readers have used the data thus far.
A few examples include:
- Lee Drutman’s analysis of Chapter 2 data documenting the translation of votes to seats in House elections over time at the Sunlight Foundation’s blog;
- The New York Times’s Sarah Wheaton writing on campaign spending data the Campaign Finance Institute put together for Chapter 3;
- Ezra Klein’s post at Wonkblog using data from Chapter 8;
- Gerald Seib’s at the Wall Street Journal using data from Chapter 8;
- The Pew Research Center’s analysis of asymmetric polarization data compiled in Chapter 8;
- TechCrunch compiled data from a number of sources, including Chapter 8 of Vital Statistics, to discuss the prospects for immigration reform;
- Niraj Chokshi’s National Journal article analyzing the data from Chapter 6 on productivity in Congress;
- Our counterparts at the American Enterprise Institute, Norm Ornstein and Jennifer Marsico, wrote about the data at The American.
Check out our infographics for data from Chapters 1, 3 and 8 on congressional apportionment, independent spending in congressional elections, and average ideology for both parties in the House and Senate, respectively.
We’ve received valuable feedback regarding the data we’ve compiled, and we’ll incorporate additional data points into the collection as they become available. Some data we’ll enhance include demographics of Members of Congress, Congressional staffing levels, legislative productivity and campaign finance.
We hope you’ll continue to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with feedback and questions. If you’d like to be alerted when we update our data, please sign up for the Governance Studies newsletter.