Utah State prof wins book award

Utah State prof wins book award

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LOGAN, Utah (AP) -- A Utah State professor won a national award for a book about members of Congress giving one another campaign donations.

The American Political Science Association bestowed the award on Damon Cann, an assistant political-science professor in Logan, for the best 2008 book in legislative studies.

The award takes the name of Richard F. Fenno, an American political scientist known for his pioneering research on Congress.

Cann's book is titled "Sharing the Wealth: Member Contributions and the Exchange Theory of Party Influence in the U.S. House of Representatives." It examines a practice started three decades ago and which "took off" in the 1990s as key members of Congress raised large sums of money and shared contributions with fellow party members or their party at large.

"The story of members' contributions to one another's election campaigns is fascinating, and clearly under-researched," the Fenno Prize selection committee wrote.

Cann's book explores "the consequences of the votes-for-dollars and dollars-for-power exchanges that appear to underlie contemporary majority party politics," it said.

Jamie Carson, a former colleague who is now at the University of Georgia, said Cann is "an exceptional junior scholar who is both innovative and meticulous in his research.

"His book, based on his dissertation, is what we should strive for in terms of exemplary legislative politics scholarship," Carson said.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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