Senate and House: Votes on Agreement to End the Government Shutdown and Raise the Debt Ceiling

Below we use Optimal Classification (OC) in R to plot the Senate’s 81-18 vote on an agreement crafted by Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to fund the government through January 15, 2014 (ending the government shutdown), raise the debt limit through February 7, 2014. The agreement also includes a provision that requires greater verification of income for those seeking subsidies through the Affordable Care Act. We also plot the House’s 285-144 vote on passage.

All voting Democrats in both chambers supported the bill, but Senate Republicans split 26-18 in favor and House Republicans 87-144 against. OC and the spatial model perform well in picking up the intra-party divide on this vote by modeling the most conservative Republicans as Nay votes and all Democrats and more moderate Republicans as Yea votes. In the Senate vote, there are only three classification errors: Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) (a predicted Yea vote who voted Nay) and Senators John Barasso (R-WY) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (predicted Nay votes who supported the deal). In the House vote, there are 31 errors (most of whom are close to the cutting line separating predicted Yeas from predicted Nays) with a high PRE statistic of 0.78.

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