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  1. Legislative leviathan : party government in the House

    Cox, Gary W.
    Berkeley : University of California Press, 1993.

    This book provides an incisive new look at the inner workings of the House of Representatives in the post-World War II era. Reevaluating the role of parties and committees, Gary Cox and Mathew McCubbins view parties in the House - especially majority parties - as a species of 'legislative cartel.' These cartels usurp the power, theoretically resident in the House, to make rules governing the structure and process of legislation. Possession of this rule-making power leads to two main consequences. First, the legislative process in general, and the committee system in particular, is stacked in favor of majority party interests. Second, because the majority party has all the structural advantages, the key players in most legislative deals are members of that party and the majority party's central agreements are facilitated by cartel rules and policed by the cartel's leadership. Debunking prevailing arguments about the weakening of congressional parties, Cox and McCubbins powerfully illuminate the ways in which parties exercise considerable discretion in organizing the House to carry out its work. This work will have an important impact on the study of American politics, and will greatly interest students of Congress, the presidency, and the political party system.

  2. Setting the agenda : responsible party government in the U.S. House of Representatives

    Cox, Gary W.
    Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2005.

    Scholars of the U.S. House disagree over the importance of political parties in organizing the legislative process. On the one hand, non-partisan theories stress how congressional organization serves members' non-partisan goals. On the other hand, partisan theories argue that the House is organized to serve the collective interests of the majority party. This book advances our partisan theory and presents a series of empirical tests of that theory's predictions (pitted against others). It considers why procedural cartels form, arguing that agenda power is naturally subject to cartelization in busy legislatures. It argues that the majority party has cartelized agenda power in the U.S. House since the adoption of Reed's rules in 1890. The evidence demonstrates that the majority party seizes agenda control at nearly every stage of the legislative process in order to prevent bills that the party dislikes from reaching the floor.

    Online EBSCO Academic Comprehensive Collection

  3. Making votes count : strategic coordination in the world's electoral systems

    Cox, Gary W.
    Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 1997.

    Popular elections are at the heart of representative democracy. Thus, understanding the laws and practices that govern such elections is essential to understanding modern democracy. In this book, Cox views electoral laws as posing a variety of coordination problems that political forces must solve. Coordination problems - and with them the necessity of negotiating withdrawals, strategic voting, and other species of strategic coordination - arise in all electoral systems. This book employs a unified game-theoretic model to study strategic coordination worldwide and that relies primarily on constituency-level rather than national aggregate data in testing theoretical propositions about the effects of electoral laws. This book also considers not just what happens when political forces succeed in solving the coordination problems inherent in the electoral system they face but also what happens when they fail.

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