Interests, Institutions, and Ideology in Securing Policy Change: The Republican Conversion to Trade Liberalization after Smoot-Hawley
This paper investigates how changes in both institutional incentives and economic interests are important for securing durable changes in economic policy. We study how bipartisan support developed to sustain the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act (RTAA) of 1934, which fundamentally transformed U.S. trade policy. The durability of this change was achieved only when the Republicans, long-time supporters of high tariffs who originally vowed to repeal the RTAA, began to support this Democratic initiative in the 1940s. We find little evidence of an ideological shift among Republicans, but rather an increased sensitivity to export interests for which the institutional structure of the RTAA itself may have been responsible. We conclude that the combination of greater export opportunities and the institutional change that strengthened exporters' lobbying position was required to bring about Republican support for trade liberalization. Copyright 1999 by the University of Chicago.
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Randall S. Kroszner & Philip E. Strahan, 1999. "What Drives Deregulation? Economics and Politics of the Relaxation of Bank Branching Restrictions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1437-1467.
- Bender, Bruce & Lott, John R, Jr, 1996. "Legislator Voting and Shirking: A Critical Review of the Literature," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 87(1-2), pages 67-100, April.
- North, D.C., 1990.
"A Transaction Cost Theory of Politics,"
144, Washington St. Louis - School of Business and Political Economy.
- Poole, Keith T. & Rosenthal, Howard, 1996. "Are legislators ideologues or the agents of constituents?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 707-717, April.
- Dani Rodrik, 1996. "Understanding Economic Policy Reform," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 9-41, March.
- Fordham, Benjamin O., 1998. "Economic Interests, Party, and Ideology in Early Cold War Era U.S. Foreign Policy," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(02), pages 359-396, March.
- Gary S. Becker, 1983. "A Theory of Competition Among Pressure Groups for Political Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 98(3), pages 371-400.
- Peltzman, Sam, 1984. "Constituent Interest and Congressional Voting," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(1), pages 181-210, April.
- Krishna Srinivasan, 1997. "An Empirical Analysis of the Political Economy of Tariffs," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(1), pages 55-70, 03.
- George J. Stigler, 1971. "The Theory of Economic Regulation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 2(1), pages 3-21, Spring.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:v:42:y:1999:i:2:p:643-73. 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: (Journals Division)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.