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    Incumbents Compared to New Elected Officials

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    What are the benefits of being a congressional incumbent vs a challenger? Discuss some of the concerns that both candidates need to be aware of and the strategies used to better their chance at election.

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    Incumbents in Congress have been re-elected more than their challengers in Congress by an overwhelming majority in both houses. These have been due to the factors that incumbents have more experience, more visibility- better access to the media and somewhat due to the campaign funds as well as the money of the incumbents in re-elections. From the political elections of the 19th century to modern election, the political advantage of the incumbent has been the rule and factor in political electioneering.

    The first factor is that incumbents have more experience in political election and campaigning than the challengers. Every sitting member of Congress has at least one political campaign in their lifetime that gives them the skills and knowledge to sway voters through public speaking, advertising, and campaigning. In addition, the incumbent generally has a volunteer campaigning staff ready to go, because of this campaign experience.

    The second factor, visibility, is that the incumbent is better known and the voters know their stances on many of the issues than the challengers. Many Senators and Representatives have ready access to radio, television, newspaper, and computer messaging system than the challengers. ...