Marvin Overby

Marvin Overby
American Politics
305 Prof. Bldg.
PDF Documents: 

I joined the Department of Political Science at the University of Missouri in 2002, after stints at the University of Mississippi (1993-2002) and Loyola University Chicago (1990-1993). I earned my Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma (1991), where I was a fellow at the Carl Albert Congressional Research and Studies Center. I twice served as Fei Yi-Ming Visiting Professor at the Johns Hopkins University-Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, PRC (1997-1998, 2005-2006); as Laszlo Orzagh Fulbright Distinguished Lecturer at the University of Szeged in Hungary (2000-01); and as a visiting professor at Vesalius College in Brussels (2009).


My research and teaching interests are broad, and include both a number of topics in American politics as well as some in the area of comparative legislative analysis. Recent and on-going projects include a number related to Congress (e.g., filibusters in the Senate, public opinion regarding congressional leaders, use of restrictive rules in the House, and member retirement decisions in the House and Senate), state legislative organization (e.g., representativeness of committees in both upper and lower state legislative chambers, historical development of state legislative institutions), minority politics (e.g., the Great Migration, public attitudes toward homosexuals, public estimations of homosexual population size), campaign advertising (e.g., use of radio in political campaigns), and comparative analysis of legislatures (e.g., parliamentary free votes on controversial policy proposals, parliamentary retirements).


  • American Government (POL SC 1100)
  • Congress and Legislative Politics (POL SC 4140)
  • Politics of the American South (POL SC 4170)
  • Democracy in America (and Elsewhere) (POL SC 4830)
  • Legislative Institutions (Graduate) (POL SC 9170)
  • American Political Institutions (Graduate) (POL SC 9140)
Selected Publications: 

Raymond, Christopher D., and L. Marvin Overby. Forthcoming. “Calling it Quits: Legislative Retirements in Comparative Perspective.”  Political Studies  (

Brant, Hanna K. and L. Marvin Overby. Forthcoming. “Female Appointed Successors in the U.S. Senate.” Journal of Women, Politics and Policy.

Endersby, James W. and L. Marvin Overby. 2018. “Congress and the Constitution: The Twenty-seventh Amendment and the Past and Future of Constitutional Alteration.” Congress and the Presidency 45:166-184.

Brant, Hanna K., Theodore J. Masthay, and L. Marvin Overby. 2018. “Joining the Great Majority: An Analysis of Senate Deaths, 1919-2015.” Social Science Quarterly 99: 1637-1648.

Masthay, Theodore and L. Marvin Overby. 2017. “Dynamics of Senate Retirements.” Political Research Quarterly 70:184-193.

Raymond, Christopher D. and L. Marvin Overby. 2016. “What’s in a (Party) Name?: Examining Preferences, Discipline, and Social Identity in a Parliamentary Free Vote.” Party Politics, 22:313-324.

Overby, L. Marvin. 2014. “Etiology and Attitudes: Beliefs about the Origins of Homosexuality and Their Implications for Public Policy.”  Journal of Homosexuality 61:5680587.

Miller, Susan M. and L. Marvin Overby. 2014. “Discharge Petitions and the Conditional Nature of Agenda Control in the U.S. House of Representatives."  Party Politics 20: 444-455.

Miller, Susan M. and L. Marvin Overby. 2010. “Parties, Preferences, and Petitions: Discharge Behavior in the Modern House.” Legislative Studies Quarterly, 35: 187-209.

Drury, A. Cooper, L. Marvin Overby, Adrian Ang, and Yitan Li. 2010. “’Pretty Prudent’ or ‘Rhetorically Responsive’?: The American Public’s Support for Military Action.” Political Research Quarterly, 63: 83-96.

Overby. L. Marvin. 2008. “Some Things Y’all Need to Know: Teaching Southern Politics at Home and Abroad.” Journal of Political Science Education, 4: 98-115.

Orey, D’Andra, L. Marvin Overby, and Christopher W. Larimer. 2007. “African-American Committee Chairs in American State Legislatures.” Social Science Quarterly 88:619-639.

Overby, L. Marvin and Jay Barth. 2006. "Radio Advertising in American Political Campaigns: The Persistence, Importance, and Effects of Narrowcasting." American Politics Research, 34: 451-478.

Overby, L. Marvin and Jay Barth. 2006. "Numeracy About Minority Populations: Americans' Estimations of Local Gay Population Size." Polity 38:194-210.

Overby, L. Marvin. 2006. "Public Opinion Regarding Congressional Leaders: Lessons from the 1996 Elections." Journal of Legislative Studies 12:54-75.

Prince, David W. and L. Marvin Overby. 2005. "Legislative Organization Theory and Committee Preference Outliers in State Senates." State Politics and Policy Quarterly 5:68-87.

Overby, L. Marvin and Lauren C. Bell. 2004. "Rational Behavior or the Norm of Cooperation?: Filibuster Behavior Among Retiring Senators." The Journal of Politics 66:906-924.

Overby, L. Marvin, Thomas A. Kazee, and David W. Prince. 2004. "Committee Outliers in State Legislatures." Legislative Studies Quarterly 29:81-107.

Overby, L. Marvin and Jay Barth. 2002. "Contact, Community Context, and Public Attitudes Toward Gay Men and Lesbians." Polity 34:433-456.

Overby, L. Marvin and Thomas A. Kazee. 2000. “Outlying Committees in the Statehouse: An Examination of the Prevalence of Committee Outliers in State Legislatures.”  The Journal of Politics 62: 701-728.

Smith, Charles E., Jr., Robert D. Brown, John M. Bruce, and L. Marvin Overby. 1999. “Partisan Preferences in Two Institutional Dimensions, Policy Balancing, and Voting for Congress in the 1996 National Elections.” American Journal of Political Science 43:737-764.

Overby, L. Marvin and Kenneth M. Cosgrove. 1996. “Unintended Consequences?: Racial Redistricting and the Representation of Minority Interests.”  The Journal of Politics 58:540-550.

Overby, L. Marvin. 1993. “Political Amateurism, Legislative Inexperience, and Incumbency Behavior: Southern Republican Senators, 1980-1986.” Polity 25:401-420.

Overby, L. Marvin, Beth M. Henschen, Michael H. Walsh, and Julie Strauss. 1992. “Courting Constituents?: An Analysis of the Senate Confirmation Vote on Justice Clarence Thomas.” American Political Science Review 86:997-1003.