California

52 seats: 20R, 32D

Where It Ranks Among the States (House Elections 2000)

  • Voter Turnout: 43rd (42%)
  • Victory Margin: 24th (37%)

Facts in Focus

  • In 2000, more than seven in ten adult Californians did not vote for the individual who represents them in the U.S. House of Representatives. In every election since the nineties, fewer than three out of ten Californian adults have voted for a winning representative.
  • Four House winners in 2000 did not face a major party opponent. There were that same number of uncontested House races in the entire period of elections from 1982-1996.
  • Voter turnout in U. S. House races in California was the highest since 1992 this year.
  • 79% of California's U.S. House races in 2000 were landslides won by more than 20 percentage points the highest percentage of the since the eighties, but well short of the "landslide index" of 93% in both 1986 and 1988.
  • The Republican share of the popular vote in House races stayed at about the same rate as in 1998, however, their share of seats decreased by 4 in 2000. This lack of a representative House delegation is one of the reasons the state ranked 42nd   in the Center's "democracy index."
  • Non-major party candidates won 6% of the vote in 2000 and have won at least 4% in every election in 1992-2000, yet once again did not come close to winning a seat.
  • In the four elections between 1992 and 2000, more than 16 million Californians have cast votes for losing candidates in U.S. House races; their votes were "wasted" and won no representation. In 2000 over 30% were wasted.
  • Of California's 20 House incumbents first elected before 1990, 15 have won every single election from 1992-2000 by landslide margins of at least 20%.


How California ranked in 2000
 


 
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Copyright 2000 The Center for Voting and Democracy
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