headshot_UCIWelcome! I am an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Irvine. I study American politics, U.S. Congress, elections, and gender and politics.

My book, Opting Out of Congress: Partisan Polarization and the Decline of Moderate Candidates, examines the rise of partisan polarization in Congress. The central argument is that the benefits of serving in Congress today are too low for moderates to run, further exacerbating the ideological gulf between the two parties. Another aspect of my research analyzes contemporary patterns of women’s representation and why the number of Democratic women in Congress has increased dramatically since the 1980s while the number of Republican women has barely grown.

My next book project, Money as Muscle in American Elections, explores the significance and impact of fundraising in congressional elections from 1980 to 2020.

My research has been published in the American Political Science Review, Journal of Politics, Legislative Studies Quarterly, Perspectives on Politics, Political Behavior, Political Research Quarterly, Politics, Groups, and Identities, and State Politics & Policy Quarterly. I have received financial support from the National Science Foundation, the American Association of University Women, the Dirksen Congressional Center, and the Social Science Research Council.