Document Type


Publication Date



John Wiley & Sons, Inc


As incumbent House members increasingly recruit campaign contributions from individuals who reside outside of their districts, this raises the question of whether a dependency on outside money affects members’ responsiveness and ideological proximity to district constituents.

Using data from the Cooperative Congressional Election Studies of 2006, 2008, and 2010 as well as individual contribution data corresponding to those years from the U.S. Federal Election Commission, I examine this relationship using responsiveness and proximity models of representation.

I find a dependency on outside contributions decreases members’ responsiveness to their districts and increases the members’ ideological extremity. Moreover, within‐district contributions only minimally improve ideological alignment between the member and the district.

Donors receive additional representation from members of the House at the expense of constituents.


This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Baker, A. E. (2016). Getting Short-Changed? The Impact of Outside Money on District Representation*. Social Science Quarterly, 97(5), 1096–1107., which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.