First issued in 1994 and issued every two years thereafter, Dubious Democracy provides a comprehensive quantitative assessment of the level of competition, rate of voter participation, and accuracy of representation in elections to the U.S. House of Representatives in all 50 states. With analysis of data since 1982, the report ranks each state on a "democracy index" that is a relative measurement based on average margin of victory, percentage of seats to votes, how many voters elect candidates and number of House races won by overwhelming landslides.
Dubious Democracy provides one overriding insight: Although our constitutional framers gave the House of Representatives extraordinary powers and, of all the branches of government, the clearest accountability to the American people, that accountability has been destroyed beyond recognition by winner-take-all election rules that magnify the power of campaign spending, incumbency advantage and redistricting.
Dubious Democracy 2018 highlights the chronic lack of competition and accountability in 2018 U.S. House elections across the nation. Overall 9.3% of House races were uncontested, and 60.6% were landslide victories. The average two party margin of victory was over 36 points.
Click the links below to find our past Dubious Democracy datasets.