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Garrett Glasgow, "The Efficiency of Congressional Campaign Committee Contributions in House Elections," Party Politics, 8 (November, 2002), 657-672.

First Paragraph:
The Republican Party has historically held a strong financial advantage over the Democrats in Congressional elections. Republican Party committees typically raise more money than their Democratic counterparts (Sorauf, 1988, 1992; Sorauf and Wilson, 1990). The most important of these committees in Congressional elections are the House campaign committees, comprised of members of the House of Representatives. These are known as the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC). These House campaign committees contribute the bulk of party funds to Congressional races. The NRCC generally has a large resource advantage over the DCCC in Congressional elections, allowing the Republicans to outcontribute the Democrats in most Congressional districts. Further, the NRCC also led the DCCC in developing a centralized organization for managing Congressional campaigns (Herrnson, 1988, 1989; Jacobson, 1985-6). Thus, many scholars of political party activity in US Congressional elections believe that in the 1970s and 1980s the NRCC was the more effective campaigning force both in terms of total resources and efficiency (targeting close races for contributions). Although there is no question the Republicans were more effective fundraisers than the Democrats, empirical evidence reveals that the DCCC was better at targeting close races for contributions in the late 1970s and 1980s. In the 1990s, NRCC efficiency improved relative to the DCCC, with both committees now operating as efficient campaign organizations.

Figures and Tables:
Figure 1. Congressional campaign committee expenditures, 1978
Figure 2. Cumulative expenditure functions for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), 1978
Table 1. Contribution efficiency scores, 1978-98

Last Paragraph:
Despite the significant financial and organizational advantages of the NRCC, it was the DCCC that first solved the collective action problem and moved towards an efficient distribution of campaign resources. In fact, as discussed above, the resource advantages of the NRCC were likely a disadvantage in solving the collective action problem. Today, both committees are established as professional campaign organizations designed to win seats for their party. The only surprise here is that it was the Democrats who led the way.