As the Senate prepares to take up the first major gun control debate since last December’s shooting massacre in Connecticut, a Sunlight Foundation analysis of the political pressures on 26 key senators paints a pessimistic picture for passage.
Absent a major pressure campaign to push senators to support gun control legislation, the political calculus points against the Senate passing any reform.
President Barack Obama stood to benefit politically from making that statement in April 2012, but his inference is worth considering. New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand reflected in 2011, “My own experience in Congress is when women are on committees and at hearings, the nature of the discussion is different, and the outcomes are better –- we reach better solutions, better decisions are made.”
The interactive flow graph Agreement Groups in the United States Senate [friggeri.net] by French PhD student Adrien Friggeri reveals how US senators have agreed (or disagreed) over time.
All historical US Senators were subdivided in overlapping groups of agreement using a custom-made community detection algorithm called C3, which was specifically designed to detect maximally cohesive groups in a network. Here, I guess the network was created from recognizing how people voted for specific bills.
Senate “yea” votes on raising the debt ceiling, 2002-2010. With this chart Third Way argues that politics, not principle, drive the debate about the debt limit.
It depicts the progression in political ideology of every Senate seat from 1789 to 2010. Easily trace the history of each state’s two seats over time, and track party leadership and control as new states enter the Union.