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Implementation of Anti-Discrimination Policy:Does Judicial Selection Matter?

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  • Timothy Besley
  • A. Abigail Payne

Abstract

One of the most striking changes in labor market policy of the past fifty years has comein the form of legislation to limit discrimination in the workplace based on race, gender,disability and age. If such measures are to be effective in ending discrimination, theyneed to be enforced. The latter is dependent on state and federal agencies such as theEqual Employment Opportunities Commission and ultimately the willingness of courts tofind in favor of plaintiffs. Courts also play an important role in the evolution of antidiscriminationpolicy since past decisions create future precedent. This paper askswhether the number of charges filed with government agencies depends on the method bywhich judges are selected. Popularly elected judges should be expected to have more proemployeepreferences (selection) and should move closer to employee preferences(incentives). This should result in fewer anti-discrimination charges being filed in statesthat appoint their judges. In line with this prediction, this paper uses data on the numberof employment discrimination charges filed for the period 1973-2000 and finds that statesthat appoint their judges have fewer anti-discrimination charges being filed.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE in its series STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series with number 04.

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Date of creation: Aug 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cep:stipep:04

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Web page: http://sticerd.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/default.asp

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  1. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Legal Origins," NBER Working Papers 8272, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  7. F. Andrew Hanssen, 2004. "Is There a Politically Optimal Level of Judicial Independence?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 712-729, June.
  8. William J. Collins, 2001. "The Labor Market Impact of State-Level Anti-Discrimination Laws, 1940-1960," NBER Working Papers 8310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 2003. "Elected Versus Appointed Regulators: Theory and Evidence," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1176-1206, 09.
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  11. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Cristian Pop-Eleches & Andrei Shleifer, 2004. "Judicial Checks and Balances," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 445-470, April.
  12. Hanssen, F Andrew, 2000. "Independent Courts and Administrative Agencies: An Empirical Analysis of the States," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 534-71, October.
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  14. Lucian Arye Bebchuk, 1984. "Litigation and Settlement under Imperfect Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 404-415, Autumn.
  15. Tim Besley, 2002. "Political institutions and policy choices: evidence from the United States," IFS Working Papers W02/13, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  16. Hanssen, F Andrew, 2002. " On the Politics of Judicial Selection: Lawyers and State Campaigns for the Merit Plan," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 110(1-2), pages 79-97, January.
  17. David Neumark & Wendy A. Stock, 2001. "The Effects of Race and Sex Discrimination Laws," NBER Working Papers 8215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Ruben Enikolopov, 2010. "Politicians, Bureaucrats and Targeted Redistribution: The Role of Career Concerns," Working Papers w0148, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
  2. Guerriero, Carmine, 2011. "Accountability in government and regulatory policies: Theory and evidence," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 453-469.
  3. Ruben Enikolopov, 2011. "Are Bureaucrats Really Paid Like Bureaucrats?," Working Papers w0165, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
  4. Mark Partridge & Tim Sass, 2011. "The productivity of elected and appointed officials: the case of school superintendents," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 149(1), pages 133-149, October.

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