Regina L. Wagner, "Electoral Patterns in Alabama: Local Change and Continuity Amid National Trends" (Palgrave MacmIllan, 2022)

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While significant attention in political science is devoted to national level elections, a comprehensive look at state level political dynamics in the United States is so far sorely missing, and state level electoral developments and shifts are treated as mere reflections of national-level dynamics and patterns.

Regina L. Wagner's book Electoral Patterns in Alabama: Local Change and Continuity Amid National Trends (Palgrave MacmIllan, 2022) argues that this significantly impacts our ability to understand macro-level electoral shifts in the United States in general. The book analyzes gubernatorial, congressional, and presidential election results in the state of Alabama from 1945 through 2020. Comprehensive maps of county-level partisan shifts over time and comparisons between trends for different offices make it possible to isolate pivotal elections and compare state-level and national trends over time. When and where did Alabama’s electorate break with the Democratic Party, and were these breaks uniform across the state? Which counties shifted the most over time, and was this shift gradual or characterized by change elections? Comprehensive electoral data, on the county- and precinct-level, make it possible to answer these questions and place state-level electoral behavior in its regional and national context. Detailed county level demographic and economic data is used to provide local context for electoral patterns, shifts, and continuities.

Regina L. Wagner is assistant professor of political science at the University of Alabama.

Jackson Reinhardt is a graduate of University of Southern California and Vanderbilt University. He is currently an independent scholar, freelance writer, and research assistant. You can reach Jackson at and follow him on Twitter @JTRhardt

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