Year of Publication



Martin School of Public Policy and Administration

Date Available


Degree Name

Master of Public Administration

Committee Chair

Dr. Annelise Russell

Executive Summary

The effects of political characteristics on the Congressional appropriations process have remained a subject of debate in recent years. Congressionally directed spending influenced by these effects are defined as earmarks. To counter the practice of earmarking, Congress implemented multiple reforms and rules to curb the influence of partisan agendas. Total federal appropriations by year and state from 2002 – 2018 were aggregated to test the significance of the economic and political effects. This model utilized a time series fixed effects regression to determine the results that suggest select political characteristics of U.S. Senators remained significant in the distribution of federal appropriations following the implementation of the Congressional earmark reforms and moratorium.