Rep Jackie Walorski (Indiana) has died in a car crash (user search)
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  Rep Jackie Walorski (Indiana) has died in a car crash (search mode)
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Author Topic: Rep Jackie Walorski (Indiana) has died in a car crash  (Read 2739 times)
Fmr. Gov. NickG
NickG
Junior Chimp
*****
Posts: 8,245


Political Matrix
E: -8.00, S: -3.49

« on: August 03, 2022, 08:55:12 PM »

Wow that's awful. RIP.

According to wikipedia, the last member of Congress to die in an automobile/traffic accident while in office was Theo Ashton Thompson of Louisiana's 7th district on July 1st, 1965. He was succeeded by future political legend and living meme, Edwin Edwards.

This was something that I thought about when I heard the news, how infrequently American politicians seem to die in car crashes compared to the general population. Contrast that with the rate they die in plane crashes due to frequent charter plane usage, or seem to be involved in instances of vehicular manslaughter. I can think of several high profile instances of both, but very few where well known elected officials are killed in traffic accidents.  

If you assume that a member of Congress has an equal chance of dying in a car accident as the average American, you’d expect one member to die in car accident every 15-20 years.  So if it hasn’t happpened in over 50 years, I guess that is unusually rare.

However, auto deaths are significantly more common among younger people than older people, and members of Congress are definitely old…so in that sense MCs should be less likely than average to die in a car accident.

The fact that they are more likely to die in planes is entirely unsurprising.  There have been almost zero deaths on domestic commercial airlines in recent years, and the number of Americans that ride on more dangerous private planes on anything like a regular basis is minuscule.
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Fmr. Gov. NickG
NickG
Junior Chimp
*****
Posts: 8,245


Political Matrix
E: -8.00, S: -3.49

« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2022, 12:43:44 PM »

However, auto deaths are significantly more common among younger people than older people, and members of Congress are definitely old…so in that sense MCs should be less likely than average to die in a car accident.

Members of Congress almost never drive themselves though, they usually have staffers do it when they're doing work-related stuff. And given that staffers are mostly on the younger end, I'm frankly surprised it doesn't happen more often.

I'm guessing that a lot of those deaths have to do with drunk driving, and I doubt as many staffers are driving drunk while on the clock.  It's not purely an experience thing, but also one relating to certain behaviors that are less likely in that circumstance.

Absolutely...as long as the MC is never driving drunk or riding with a drunk driver, they should have a substantially lower chance of dying in a car accident than the national averages would suggest. The same is true if they are just never riding with very inexperienced or reckless drivers.
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