Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Ph.D. in Political Science

First Advisor

Johnathan C. Winburn

Second Advisor

Robert Brown

Third Advisor

John Bruce

Relational Format



I seek to answer is there a variation between the number of challengers who emerge against black incumbents in majority-minority and minority-influence congressional districts? This study will examine how demographic composition affects candidate emergence in congressional districts and other factors that might have an influence on candidate emergence such as margin of victory, incumbent’s ethnicity, political party identification, incumbent’s decision to seek reelection and length of time in office by using existing primary and secondary data to address these questions. At the conclusion of this study, one will have a clear understanding of the impact of district demographic composition on candidate emergence. The expectation is that when a congressional district has a high ethnic population and a non-white congressman, then candidates are less likely to challenge the incumbent in the upcoming election.



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