Divided government and the supreme court: Judicial behavior in civil rights and liberties cases, 1954-89

Lilliard Richardson, John M. Scheb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

One of the common explanations for the existence of divided government is that voters, preferring moderate public policy outcomes, split their tickets in voting for president and Congress. This argument presumes that divided government in fact results in more moderate policy outcomes than would be the case under unified government. To date, no one has examined the consequences of divided government for policymaking by the Supreme Court. Does appointment of Supreme Court justices under conditions of divided government produce a more moderate Court? The authors address this question in the context of civil rights and liberties cases, looking at liberal-conservative voting by justices between 1954 and 1989, inclusive. They test a model of Supreme Court decision making that incorporates a number of factors along with the existence of divided party government at the time of a justice's appointment. These factors include the number of years the individual justice has served on the Court, and the possible effects of the increased politicization of the Court and the judicial selection process since 1968. The authors find that appointment under divided party government is a significant predictor of moderation in civil rights and liberties decision making by the Court.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)458-472
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Politics Research
Volume21
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993

Fingerprint

civil rights
Supreme Court
justice
voting
decision making
politicization
court decision
president
public policy

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

@article{f29aa80d64874c3e87a7175ecc872d91,
title = "Divided government and the supreme court: Judicial behavior in civil rights and liberties cases, 1954-89",
abstract = "One of the common explanations for the existence of divided government is that voters, preferring moderate public policy outcomes, split their tickets in voting for president and Congress. This argument presumes that divided government in fact results in more moderate policy outcomes than would be the case under unified government. To date, no one has examined the consequences of divided government for policymaking by the Supreme Court. Does appointment of Supreme Court justices under conditions of divided government produce a more moderate Court? The authors address this question in the context of civil rights and liberties cases, looking at liberal-conservative voting by justices between 1954 and 1989, inclusive. They test a model of Supreme Court decision making that incorporates a number of factors along with the existence of divided party government at the time of a justice's appointment. These factors include the number of years the individual justice has served on the Court, and the possible effects of the increased politicization of the Court and the judicial selection process since 1968. The authors find that appointment under divided party government is a significant predictor of moderation in civil rights and liberties decision making by the Court.",
author = "Lilliard Richardson and Scheb, {John M.}",
year = "1993",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1532673X9302100404",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "21",
pages = "458--472",
journal = "American Politics Research",
issn = "1532-673X",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
number = "4",

}

Divided government and the supreme court : Judicial behavior in civil rights and liberties cases, 1954-89. / Richardson, Lilliard; Scheb, John M.

In: American Politics Research, Vol. 21, No. 4, 01.01.1993, p. 458-472.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Divided government and the supreme court

T2 - Judicial behavior in civil rights and liberties cases, 1954-89

AU - Richardson, Lilliard

AU - Scheb, John M.

PY - 1993/1/1

Y1 - 1993/1/1

N2 - One of the common explanations for the existence of divided government is that voters, preferring moderate public policy outcomes, split their tickets in voting for president and Congress. This argument presumes that divided government in fact results in more moderate policy outcomes than would be the case under unified government. To date, no one has examined the consequences of divided government for policymaking by the Supreme Court. Does appointment of Supreme Court justices under conditions of divided government produce a more moderate Court? The authors address this question in the context of civil rights and liberties cases, looking at liberal-conservative voting by justices between 1954 and 1989, inclusive. They test a model of Supreme Court decision making that incorporates a number of factors along with the existence of divided party government at the time of a justice's appointment. These factors include the number of years the individual justice has served on the Court, and the possible effects of the increased politicization of the Court and the judicial selection process since 1968. The authors find that appointment under divided party government is a significant predictor of moderation in civil rights and liberties decision making by the Court.

AB - One of the common explanations for the existence of divided government is that voters, preferring moderate public policy outcomes, split their tickets in voting for president and Congress. This argument presumes that divided government in fact results in more moderate policy outcomes than would be the case under unified government. To date, no one has examined the consequences of divided government for policymaking by the Supreme Court. Does appointment of Supreme Court justices under conditions of divided government produce a more moderate Court? The authors address this question in the context of civil rights and liberties cases, looking at liberal-conservative voting by justices between 1954 and 1989, inclusive. They test a model of Supreme Court decision making that incorporates a number of factors along with the existence of divided party government at the time of a justice's appointment. These factors include the number of years the individual justice has served on the Court, and the possible effects of the increased politicization of the Court and the judicial selection process since 1968. The authors find that appointment under divided party government is a significant predictor of moderation in civil rights and liberties decision making by the Court.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0041087890&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0041087890&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1532673X9302100404

DO - 10.1177/1532673X9302100404

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:0041087890

VL - 21

SP - 458

EP - 472

JO - American Politics Research

JF - American Politics Research

SN - 1532-673X

IS - 4

ER -