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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. Besley, Timothy J. & Coate, Stephen, 2001. "Issue Unbundling via Citizens' initiatives," CEPR Discussion Papers 2857, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Henning Bohn & Robert P. Inman, 1996. "Balanced Budget Rules and Public Deficits: Evidence from the U.S. States," NBER Working Papers 5533, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. William J. Collins, 2003. "The labor market impact of state-level anti-discrimination laws, 1940-1960," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(2), pages 244-272, January.
  4. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Pop-Eleches, Cristian & Shleifer, Andrei, 2004. "Judicial Checks and Balances," Scholarly Articles 3451311, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Hanssen, F Andrew, 1999. "The Effect of Judicial Institutions on Uncertainty and the Rate of Litigation: The Election versus Appointment of State Judges," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(1), pages 205-32, January.
  6. Christopher F Baum & Mark E. Schaffer & Steven Stillman, 2002. "Instrumental variables and GMM: Estimation and testing," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 545, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 14 Feb 2003.
  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. 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.
  9. Hayes, Beth, 1984. "Unions and Strikes with Asymmetric Information," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 57-83, January.
  10. Lucian Arye Bebchuk, 1984. "Litigation and Settlement under Imperfect Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 404-415, Autumn.
  11. William M. Landes & Richard A. Posner, 1975. "The Independent Judiciary in an Interest-Group Perspective," NBER Working Papers 0110, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Legal Origins," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1920, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  13. Angrist, J D & Imbens, G W & Krueger, A B, 1999. "Jackknife Instrumental Variables Estimation," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(1), pages 57-67, Jan.-Feb..
  14. Besley, Timothy J. & Case, Anne, 2002. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," CEPR Discussion Papers 3498, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. 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.
  16. David Neumark & Wendy A. Stock, 2001. "The Effects of Race and Sex Discrimination Laws," NBER Working Papers 8215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. 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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Cited by:
  1. Guerriero, Carmine, 2011. "Accountability in government and regulatory policies: Theory and evidence," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 453-469.
  2. 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.
  3. Ruben Enikolopov, 2011. "Are Bureaucrats Really Paid Like Bureaucrats?," Working Papers w0165, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
  4. Ruben Enikolopov, 2010. "Politicians, Bureaucrats and Targeted Redistribution: The Role of Career Concerns," Working Papers w0148, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).

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