Link to Slides: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1jtf2NLJmqmaf7_6FAn3ervp9WYMEFYEzyYm2G_d9SPM/edit?usp=sharing
Former congressman Brad Sherman served (officially) from 1997-2013. As a congressman, he advocated strongly for issues regarding taxes, the economy, and education. While he does not prioritize immigration as one of his main issues, he explicitly expresses his support to defund President Trump’s agenda and attacks his travel ban. From 2008-2013, Sherman has been able to win re-election fairly easily, with a wide margin of roughly 30-40% each time. Following Sherman in office, Congresswoman Judy Chu is district 27’s current representative and the first Chinese American elected to Congress. Chu tends to focus on education, the environment, and immigration. She, as opposed to Sherman, is very vocal about her outlook on immigration, as she expresses her desire for immigration reform. Since 2013, Chu has won re-election by a wide margin of victory: around 30-60%.
The median voter theorem acts as basis for the how different compositions of a district’s population affects the way a representative votes on immigration policies. The “median voter” is measured on a right-left political scale and represents how the majority of the district will vote. Wong argues that a Member of Congress will try and appeal to the median voter in order to gain the most votes and win an election. Wong then proceeds to predict how percentages of the foreign born population affect the median voter, and effectively, how the MC will vote. He concludes that a high foreign born population will lead to a lower likelihood that the MC will support restrictive immigration bills. Similarly, a high naturalized citizen population will also lead to the same result. Regarding interior enforcement, Wong states that population with high percentages of Latinos and Asians in a district will lead to a lower chance that the representative will support interior enforcement. He admits, however, the one of the strongest indications of how a representative will vote depends on partisanship. Wong delves deeper into analysis and hypothesizes that in particular, a high Latino population even decreases a republican MC’s chance of voting against interior enforcement, while a high Asian population has the opposite effect on republican representatives.
Using the theories from the previous slide, we can predict how members of congress in California District 27 will vote. The foreign born population in CA27 is 38.6%, a higher percentage than the national percentage (17.8%) and state percentage (27.0%). Thus, we can expect that the MC will be less likely to support restrictive immigration policies. Similarly, the Latino population and Asian population (28.0% and 38.%, respectively) in the district is fairly high and is also greater than the national statistic (17.6% and 5.4%, respectively); thus, we can predict that an democratic MC will be less likely to vote for interior enforcement. Ultimately, partisanship also affects how a MC will vote. For the past 18 years, those who have held the house seat in CA27 have been democratic, so one would expect that the district is fairly liberal (also, based off the election results from the slide 1, democrats have won by a large margin). We can also predict this with Wong’s prediction about the median voter theorem. Chu is more liberal than 86% of the house and has an ideology score of -0.488. Thus, we can reaffirm that the median voter in this district is also just as liberal.
Chu’s voting record is consistent with her party, in that she typically votes in accordance with however the democratic party votes. Regarding immigration, she tends to sponsor bills that support immigration or block presidential actions that restrict immigration flow and votes for bills that support immigration reform. Both her website and twitter handles reinforce Chu’s backing for immigration, in which they clearly outline her opinions on this subject. For example, her website lists the immigration policies she supports, including DREAM Act and POWER Act and recent press articles on Chu’s interactions with immigration policy, including blocking President Trump’s National Emergency. Since January of 2019, roughly 67% of all her tweets address immigration. She criticizes republicans and President Trump for “falsely insisting that immigrants are dangerous” (Feb 11) and rebukes with tweets defending immigrants (“Immigration is not a threat” (Jan 29)). Her social media and voting record reinforces the prediction made previously that she tends to vote against restrictive immigration policies.