House: Votes on Alternate 2014 Budgets

Below we use Optimal Classification (OC) in R to plot the House‚Äôs votes on six budget proposals for 2014. The House voted down the four Democratic budget sand the Republican Study Committee budget, and passed Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) budget by a 221-207 margin.

The plots below show that voting patterns on the budget votes are quite consistent with legislators’ ideological positions. We array the votes from the most liberal proposal (the Congressional Progressive Caucus budget) to the most conservative proposal (the Republican Study Committee budget) and it is clear the the cutting line that divides predicted Yea votes from predicted Nay votes moves steadily across the ideological spectrum (the first dimension). Note that only a handful (14) of House Democrats did not abstain on the Republican Study Committee budget in an effort to allow the measure to pass the chamber with Republican votes and tie vulnerable Republicans to its more conservative elements.

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Below we also plot the 36 Representatives (30 Democrats and 6 Republicans) who did not support any of the six budgets. This group appears to be mostly composed to the dwindling number of moderates remaining in the chamber: in particular, the moderate (Blue Dog) wing of House Democrats with high second dimensions scores at the top of the plot.

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