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Federalism and Public Responsiveness to Policy

  • Christopher Wlezien
  • Stuart N. Soroka
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    Public responsiveness to government policy is a crucial component of representative democracy, but may be far weaker in federal regimes. This article explores the consequences of federalism for public responsiveness in one highly federalized policy domain: welfare spending in Canada. Results suggest that citizens' preferences for spending at the federal level are affected by changes in both federal and provincial spending, and to an equal degree; they suggest, in short, that federalism poses serious problems where public responsiveness is concerned. A concluding section considers the implications of these findings for the representation of public opinion in policy in federalized states. Copyright 2011, Oxford University Press.

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    Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Publius: The Journal of Federalism.

    Volume (Year): 41 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 1 (Winter)
    Pages: 31-52

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:publus:v:41:y:2011:i:1:p:31-52
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