S-Space Researcher Institutes (연구소) American Studies Institute (미국학연구소) 미국학 미국학 Volume 34 Number 1/2 (2011)
Divided Government and Legislative Productivity
- Park, Jee-Kwang
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 미국학연구소
- 미국학, Vol.34 No.1, pp. 257-283
- Debate surrounding the role of divided government has dominated the study of the American political system since the 1980s. However, the biggest question on divided government has yet to be settled: whether divided government significantly decreases legislative productivity, which is measured as the number of important enactments. The traditional view of divided government is that it is less productive than unified government. David R. Mayhew, however, challenges the traditional view with a comprehensive analysis of the post-WWII enactment. Moreover, Keith Krehbiel justifies the Mayhew’s findings with his gridlock model. Despite the sheer volume of studies favoring unified government, however, no study directly disputes Mayhew’s empirical analysis. Moreover, no one provides a theoretical explanation as to why unified government should produce more important enactments. In this paper, I provide both a theoretical model and empirical analyses for the legislative superiority of unified government. I show that my modified gridlock model implies the conditional superiority of unified government in producing major enactments. The empirical analyses verified that unified government produced more brand-new enactment but not recurrent as the modified gridlock model predicts.
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