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How Divided Is Congress? Two Charts Explain It

A chart from the National Journal.
National Journal
A chart from the National Journal.

This is from a few days ago, but we missed it until The Atlantic pointed it out today.

We know Congress is divided. But how much so?

Here's a graph The Atlantic dug up from data The National Journal has put together using data they've collected for about 30 years analyzing congressional votes:

Basically it's showing you ideology based on votes and that in 1982 that middle point between the most liberal Democratic senator and the most conservative Republican senator is filled with Democrats and Republicans who cross the aisle.

In 2011, the graph shows, that blue/red line is rarely crossed.

This other chart gives you numbers:

In the Senate, The National Journal says, there are zero members in that in-between space, while in the house there are 16.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta
Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.