IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/sae/jothpo/v29y2017i2p243-272.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Storable votes and judicial nominations in the US Senate

Author

Listed:
  • Alessandra Casella

    (Department of Economics, Columbia University, and NBER, USA; CEPR, UK)

  • Sébastien Turban

    (Department of Economics, Columbia University, USA)

  • Gregory Wawro

    (Department of Political Science, Columbia University, USA)

Abstract

We model a procedural reform aimed at restoring a proper role for the minority in the confirmation process of judicial nominations in the US Senate. We propose that nominations to the same level court be collected in periodic lists and voted upon individually with storable votes, allowing each senator to allocate freely across the list a fixed number of total votes. Although each nomination is decided by simple majority, storable votes make it possible for the minority to win occasionally, but only when the relative importance its members assign to a nomination is higher than the relative importance assigned by the majority. Numerical simulations approximate the composition of the 113th and 114th Senates. Under plausible assumptions motivated by a game theoretic model, we find that a minority of 45 senators would be able to win about 20 percent of confirmation battles when the majority party controls the presidency, and between 40 and 60 percent when the president identifies with the minority party. For most parameter values, the possibility of minority victories increases aggregate welfare.

Suggested Citation

  • Alessandra Casella & Sébastien Turban & Gregory Wawro, 2017. "Storable votes and judicial nominations in the US Senate," Journal of Theoretical Politics, , vol. 29(2), pages 243-272, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jothpo:v:29:y:2017:i:2:p:243-272
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://jtp.sagepub.com/content/29/2/243.abstract
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Herve Moulin, 2004. "Fair Division and Collective Welfare," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262633116, January.
    2. Casella, Alessandra & Gelman, Andrew & Palfrey, Thomas R., 2006. "An experimental study of storable votes," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 123-154, October.
    3. Casella, Alessandra & Gelman, Andrew, 2008. "A simple scheme to improve the efficiency of referenda," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 2240-2261, October.
    4. Casella, Alessandra, 2012. "Storable Votes: Protecting the Minority Voice," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195309089.
    5. Rafael Hortala-Vallve, 2012. "Qualitative voting," Journal of Theoretical Politics, , vol. 24(4), pages 526-554, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    U.S. Senate; filibuster; storable votes; minority representation;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • K4 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:jothpo:v:29:y:2017:i:2:p:243-272. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (SAGE Publications). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.