I shall post videos, graphs, news stories, and other material there. We shall use some of this material in class, and you may review the rest at your convenience. You will all receive invitations to post to the blog. (Please let me know if you do not get such an invitation.) I encourage you to use the blog in these ways:
To post questions or comments about the readings before we discuss them in class;
To follow up on class discussions with additional comments or questions.
To post relevant news items or videos.

There are only two major limitations: no coarse language, and no derogatory comments about people at the Claremont Colleges.

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Saturday, March 8, 2008

Senate Power Rankings

Knowledgis calculated a ranking of members based upon their "power and ability to be effective." The criteria they used were position, indirect influence, legislative activity, and earmarks. I'm not sure what exact methodology they used to calculate and weight those factors. It appears that they amassed a lot of data to produce this but I couldn't find where they go into how they actually calculate their numbers. Anyway here's a cool looking graph compiled from this data.

Not surprisingly, the Democrats in general have more power. They are the majority right now after all. Interestingly there are a few Republicans high up on the power rankings. Mitch McConnell and John McCain are fairly powerful by this measure. Interestingly Clinton is slightly more powerful than John McCain who is slightly more powerful than Obama (again by this measure). Of course, all of them are less powerful than Diane Feinstein so California reigns supreme.

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