Veto Bargaining: Presidents and the Politics of Negative Power / Edition 1

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With one party controlling the presidency and the opposing party controlling Congress, the veto has inevitably become a critical tool of presidential power. Combining sophisticated game theory with unprecedented data, this book analyzes how divided party presidents use threats and vetoes to wrest policy concessions from a hostile Congress. Case studies of the most important vetoes in recent history add texture to the analysis, detailing how President Clinton altered the course of Newt Gingrich's Republican Revolution. Offering the first book-length analysis to bring rational choice theory to bear on the presidency, Veto Bargaining is a major contribution to our understanding of American politics in an age of divided party government.

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Editorial Reviews

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"This pathbreaking study should be in the library of every serious student of US national politics." Choice
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521625500
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/2004
  • Series: Political Economy of Institutions and Decisions Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 310
  • Sales rank: 1,330,291
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.71 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Divided government and interbranch bargaining; 2. A natural history of veto bargaining, 1945–1992; 3. Rational choice and the presidency; 4. Models of veto bargaining; 5. Explaining the patterns; 6. Testing the models; 7. Veto threats; 8. Interpreting history; 9. Conclusions.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2007

    Political science at its best!

    Cameron¿s book has it all: 1) exceptional formal theory and game modeling, 2) informative, qualitative case examples, and 3) masterful quantitative analysis. He has done what has seemingly been an incredible task. He has combined a multitude of research strategies to examine the phenomena of presidential power of the veto. His approach goes beyond that of others as he examines various models to demonstrate the veto as the critical tool presidential power in executive-legislative relations. He analyzes how the use of threats of vetoes can sway policy decisions to that of the president. Cameron does a few things differently than other works. First, he examines the presidency as opposed to the president. This presidency-centered approach allows Cameron to avoid the ¿small n¿ factor. Second, Cameron applies multiple research strategies to examine inter-branch legislative relations. His use of formal theory exemplifies great skill as it identifies the complexity of this phenomenon. The applicability of the rational choice model does, however, pose some concern. Rational choice theory, according to Cameron, encompasses three major assumptions: actor, intention, and aggregate. And, my biggest concerns are centered around the intention and aggregate assumptions as well as possible selection bias. Despite these concerns, this book is an awesome work. In fact, it is the epitome of political science research. This formal analysis of inter-branch bargaining reveals much about presidential influence and strategy. Its institutional analysis dramatizes the effects of constitutional rules and procedures and reveal otherwise subtle possibilities. This work is an incredible and exciting contribution to the study of executive-legislative relations.

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