cover of book

Self-Financed Candidates in Congressional Elections
by Jennifer A. Steen
University of Michigan Press, 2006
Paper: 978-0-472-06903-3 | eISBN: 978-0-472-02255-7 | Cloth: 978-0-472-09903-0
Library of Congress Classification JK1991.S72 2006
Dewey Decimal Classification 324.780973


Are our elections for sale? Americans have long asked this question in the face of skyrocketing campaign spending by candidates and parties. Then, in the 1990s, came a wave of wealthy individuals whose deep pockets seemed to be buying political offices across the country. Our worst suspicions were confirmed. Or were they? What effect do self-financers really have on electoral outcomes? Jennifer Steen's authoritative empirical study of self-financed candidates is a landmark in American politics. Steen thoroughly dispels the notion that self-funded candidates can buy legislative seats, proving that the vast majority of self-financers do not win their elections. Her book gives us a truer understanding of self-financers' actual influence on campaign competition and rhetoric.

Jennifer A. Steen is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Boston College and a former political consultant. She is one of the nation's leading authorities on self-financed candidates.

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