Doug Jones Will Be the Most Liberal Senator From Alabama in Recent History

I guess you can file this under “too much free time on my hands.” But I was curious: will Doug Jones be not just the first Democratic Senator from Alabama since 1992, but the most liberal Alabama senator in recent history? Based on scores from DW-NOMINATE, the answer is almost certainly yes:

Negative numbers are liberal, so Elizabeth Warren and Jeff Merkley give an idea of the current far-left pole of the Democratic Party, while Mike Lee and James Risch are at the far-right pole of the Republican Party. Doug Jones will clearly be the most culturally liberal senator from Alabama since the New Deal, and depending on how he compares to Hugo Black, the most economically liberal too.

By the way, if DW-NOMINATE scores are to be believed, Jeff Sessions (the lower black diamond) was the previous record-holder for most culturally liberal senator from Alabama in recent history. Interesting, no?

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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