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Why Executive Power Centralizes Government


  • Samuel A. Baker

    () (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)


This paper examines the effects of political parties, executive power and efficiency on federal structure. It proposes and tests a model of federalism in which different levels of veto power can lead to varying degrees of centralization in the provision of central and local governmental services when executive and legislative branches have disparate preferences over which level should provide services. Results for the US (1982-1992) find state and local spending centralizes with increased veto power because, absent offsetting political party advocacy for decentralization, central government spending interests dominate local government spending interests.

Suggested Citation

  • Samuel A. Baker, 2004. "Why Executive Power Centralizes Government," Working Papers 09, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary, revised 20 Jun 2005.
  • Handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:9

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    Federalism; Centralization; Political parties; Executive power; Veto;

    JEL classification:

    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government

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