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Rethinking Political Bargaining: Policymaking with a Single Proposer

  • David M. Primo
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    Most political bargaining in the U.S. system has two features which are constitutionally mandated: (1) only one actor can make a formal proposal, and (2) he or she can make an indefinite number of proposals. Existing work in economics and political science ignores at least one of these features. I construct a model incorporating both of these components of political bargaining. The main finding of this article is that time preferences and the number of periods have no effect on the equilibrium policy outcomes, which are identical to those first stated by Romer and Rosenthal in a one-period model. This result suggests that impatience and time preferences may not be key features of political bargaining. This model has implications for constitutional and statutory rules regarding bargaining: it can be applied to presidential appointments, legislation, citizen initiatives, vetoes and filibusters (e.g., Krehbiel's pivotal politics model), and term limits. Copyright 2002, Oxford University Press.

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    Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal The Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization.

    Volume (Year): 18 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 2 (October)
    Pages: 411-427

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:jleorg:v:18:y:2002:i:2:p:411-427
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