Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-747cfc64b6-cssqh Total loading time: 0.185 Render date: 2021-06-17T04:05:35.647Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true }

Nonunitary Parties, Government Formation, and Gamson’s Law

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 April 2021

GARY W. COX
Affiliation:
Stanford University
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Following the coalition literature highlighting intraparty politics (e.g., Giannetti and Benoit 2009; Laver 1999; Strøm 2003), I address the well-known “portfolio allocation paradox” (Warwick and Druckman 2006) by introducing a new model of government formation based on two main assumptions. First, no actor has a structural advantage in the negotiations leading to government formation. Second, all actors who can deprive the coalition of a majority (or other critical threshold size) must be included in the negotiations—not just parties. Whereas standard bargaining models are inconsistent with Gamson’s Law, the model proposed here implies that equilibrium portfolio allocations should be mostly Gamsonian but with a small-party bias, as the empirical literature has long found. Empirically, I show that my model outperforms the literature’s standard specification (due to Browne and Franklin 1973). Moreover, one of the model’s new predictions—that candidate-centered electoral rules should promote more Gamsonian portfolio allocations—is supported.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the American Political Science Association

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

References

Bäck, Hanna. 2008. “Intra-party Politics and Coalition Formation: Evidence from Swedish Local Government.” Party Politics 14 (1): 7189.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bäck, Hanna, Meier, Henk Erik, and Persson, Thomas. 2009. “Party Size and Portfolio Payoffs: The Proportional Allocation of Ministerial Posts in Coalition Governments.” The Journal of Legislative Studies 15 (1): 1034.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Baron, David P., and Ferejohn, John A.. 1989. “Bargaining in Legislatures.” American Political Science Review 83 (4): 11811206.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bassi, Anna. 2013. “A Model of Endogenous Government Formation.” American Journal of Political Science 57 (4): 777–93.Google Scholar
Bergman, Torbjörn. 1993. “Formation Rules and Minority Governments.” European Journal of Political Research 23 (1): 5566.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Browne, Eric, and Franklin, Mark. 1973. “Aspects of Coalition Payoffs in European Parliamentary Democracies.” American Political Science Review 67 (3): 453–69.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Browne, Eric, and Frendreis, John. 1980. “Allocating Coalition Payoffs by Conventional Norm: An Assessment of the Evidence from Cabinet Coalition Situations.” American Journal of Political Science 24 (4): 753–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Burguet, Roberto, and Caminal, Ramon. 2020. “Coalitional Bargaining with Consistent Counterfactuals.” Journal of Economic Theory 187: 137.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carey, John, and Shugart, Matthew. 1995. “Incentives to Cultivate a Personal Vote: A Rank Ordering of Electoral Formulas.” Electoral Studies 14: 417–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carroll, Royce, and Cox, Gary W.. 2007. “The Logic of Gamson’s Law: Pre-election Coalitions and Portfolio Allocations.” American Journal of Political Science 51 (2): 300–13.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ceron, Andrea. 2012. “Bounded Oligarchy: How and When Factions Constrain Leaders in Party Position-taking.” Electoral Studies 31 (4): 689701.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ceron, Andrea. 2014. “Gamson Rule Not for All: Patterns of Portfolio Allocation among Italian Party Factions.” European Journal of Political Research 53 (1): 180–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Compte, Olivier, and Jehiel, Philippe. 2010. “The Coalitional Nash Bargaining Solution.” Econometrica 78 (5): 15931623.Google Scholar
Cox, Gary W. 2021. “Replication Data for: Nonunitary Parties, Government Formation, and Gamson’s Law.” Harvard Dataverse. Dataset. https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/RQE9SO.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cox, Gary W., Fiva, Jon H., Smith, Daniel M., and Sørensen, Rune J.. 2020. “Moral Hazard in Electoral Teams.” Center for Economic Studies and IFO Institute. Working Paper No. 8357.Google Scholar
Cutler, Josh, De Marchi, Scott, Gallop, Max, Hollenbach, Florian M., Laver, Michael, and Orlowski, Matthias. 2016. “Cabinet Formation and Portfolio Distribution in European Multiparty Systems.” British Journal of Political Science 46 (1): 3143.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
D’Alimonte, Roberto. 2005. “Italy: A Case of Fragmented Bipolarism.” In The Politics of Electoral Systems, eds. Gallagher, Michael and Mitchell, Peter, 253–76. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
De Swann, Abram. 1973. Coalition Theories and Cabinet Formation. Amsterdam: Elsevier.Google Scholar
Dewachter, Wilfried. 1987. “Changes in a Particratie: The Belgian System from 1944 to 1986.” In Party Systems in Denmark, Austria, Switzerland, The Netherlands, and Belgium, ed. Daalder, Hans, 285364. London: Frances Pinter.Google Scholar
Diermeier, Daniel, and van Roozendaal, Peter. 1998. “The Duration of Cabinet Formation Processes in Western Multi-party Democracies.” British Journal of Political Science 28 (4): 609–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dreijmanis, John. 1982. “Austria: The ‘Black’-‘Red’ Coalitions.” In Government Coalitions in Western Democracies, eds. Browne, Eric and Dreijmanis, John, 237–59. New York: Longman.Google Scholar
Ennser-Jedenastik, Laurenz P. 2013. “Portfolio Allocation within Parties: The Role of Regional Party Branches.” The Journal of Legislative Studies 19 (3): 309–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ennser-Jedenastik, Laurenz P. 2014. “The Politics of Patronage and Coalition: How Parties Allocate Managerial Positions in State-owned Enterprises.” Political Studies 62 (2): 398417.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Epstein, David, Brady, David, Kawato, Sadafumi, and O’Halloran, Sharyn. 1997. “A Comparative Approach to Legislative Organization: Careerism and Seniority in the United States and Japan.” American Journal of Political Science 41 (3): 965–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Falcó-Gimeno, Albert, and Indridason, Indridi H.. 2013. “Uncertainty, Complexity, and Gamson’s Law: Comparing Coalition Formation in Western Europe.” West European Politics 36 (1): 221–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Farrell, David, and McAllister, Ian. 2006. “Voter Satisfaction and Electoral Systems: Does Preferential Voting in Candidate-centred Systems Make a Difference?European Journal of Political Research 45 (5): 723–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fréchette, Guillaume, Kagel, John, and Morelli, Massimo. 2005. “Gamson’s Law versus Non-cooperative Bargaining Theory.” Games and Economic Behavior 51 (2): 365–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gamson, William. 1961. “A Theory of Coalition Formation.” American Sociological Review 26 (3): 373–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Giannetti, Daniela, and Benoit, Kenneth, eds. 2009. Intra-party Politics and Coalition Governments. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
Golder, Sona N., and Thomas, Jacquelyn A.. 2014. “Portfolio Allocation and the Vote of No Confidence.” British Journal of Political Science 44 (1): 2939.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Indridason, Indridi H. 2015. “Live for Today, Hope for Tomorrow? Rethinking Gamson’s Law.” Unpublished Manuscript. University of California, Riverside.Google Scholar
Laver, Michael. 1998. “Models of Government Formation.” Annual Review of Political Science 1: 125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laver, Michael. 1999. “Divided Parties, Divided Government.” Legislative Studies Quarterly, 24 (1): 529.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laver, Michael, and Shepsle, Kenneth. 1996. Making and Breaking Governments. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laver, Michael, and Schofield, Norman. 1998. Multiparty Government: The Politics of Coalition in Europe. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Laver, Michael, de Marchi, Scott, and Mutlu, Hande. 2011. “Negotiation in Legislatures over Government Formation.” Public Choice 147 (3): 285304.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Leiserson, Michael. 1968. “Factions and Coalitions in One-party Japan: An Interpretation Based on the Theory of Games.” American Political Science Review 62 (3): 770–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Marsh, Michael, and Mitchell, Paul. 1999. “Office, Votes, and Then Policy: Choices for Political Parties in the Republic of Ireland, 1981-1992.” In Policy, Office, or Votes? How Political Parties in Western Europe Make Hard Decisions, eds. Müller, Wolfgang C. and Strøm, Kaare, 3662. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Martin, Lanny, and Vanberg, Georg. 2003. “Wasting Time? The Impact of Ideology and Size On Delay in Coalition Formation.” British Journal of Political Science 33 (2): 323–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Martin, Lanny, and Vanberg, Georg. 2014. “Parties and Policymaking in Multiparty Governments: The Legislative Median, Ministerial Autonomy, and the Coalition Compromise.” American Journal of Political Science 58 (4): 979–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Martin, Lanny, and Vanberg, Georg. 2020. “What You See Is Not Always What You Get: Bargaining Before an Audience under Multiparty Government.” American Political Science Review 114 (4): 1138–54.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mershon, Carol. 2001a. “Contending Models of Portfolio Allocation and Office Payoffs to Party Factions: Italy, 1963-79.” American Journal of Political Science 45 (2): 277–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mershon, Carol. 2001b. “Party Factions and Coalition Government: Portfolio Allocation in Italian Christian Democracy.” Electoral Studies 20 (4): 555–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Milner, Helen V. 1997. Interests, Institutions and Information: Domestic Politics and International Relations. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Morelli, Massimo. 1999. “Demand Competition and Policy Compromise in Legislative Bargaining.” American Political Science Review 93 (4): 809–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
O’Leary, Brendan, Grofman, Bernard, and Elklit, Jørgen. 2005. “Divisor Methods for Sequential Portfolio Allocation in Multi-party Executive Bodies: Evidence from Northern Ireland and Denmark.” American Journal of Political Science 49 (1): 198211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pridham, Gregory. 1986. “Italy’s Party Democracy and Coalitional Behavior.” In Coalitional Behavior in Theory and Practice, ed. Pridham, Gregory, 198229. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rasch, Bjørn Erik, Martin, Shane, and Cheibub, José Antonio, eds. 2015. Parliaments and Government Formation: Unpacking Investiture Rules. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Riker, William. 1962. The Theory of Political Coalitions. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
Schattschneider, E. E. 1942. Party Government. New York: Rinehart.Google Scholar
Schelling, Thomas C. 1960. The Strategy of Conflict. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
Schofield, Norman, and Laver, Michael. 1985. “Bargaining Theory and Portfolio Payoffs in European Coalition Governments 1945–83.” British Journal of Political Science 15 (2): 143–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schumacher, Gijs, and Giger, Nathalie. 2017. “Who Leads the Party? On Membership Size, Selectorates and Party Oligarchy.” Political Studies 65 (1S): 162–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Seki, Katsunori, and Williams, Laron. 2014. “Updating the Party Government Data Set.” Electoral Studies 34: 270–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spotts, Frederic, and Weiser, Theodar. 1986. Italy: A Difficult Democracy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Strøm, Kaare. 1994. “The Presthus Debacle: Intraparty Politics and Bargaining Failure in Norway.” American Political Science Review 88 (1): 112–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Strøm, Kaare. 2003. “Parliamentary Democracy and Delegation.” In Delegation and Accountability in Parliamentary Democracies, eds. Strøm, Kaare, Bergman, Torbjörn, and Müller, Wolfgang C., 55107. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tarar, Ahmer. 2001. “International Bargaining with Two-sided Domestic Constraints.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 45 (3): 320–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Verzichelli, Luca. 2008. “Portfolio Allocation.” In Cabinets and Coalition Bargaining: The Democratic Life Cycle in Western Europe, eds. Strøm, Kaare, Müller, Wolfgang C., and Bergman, Torbjörn, 237–67. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Von dem Berge, Benjamin, and Poguntke, Thomas. 2017. “Varieties of Intra-party Democracy: Conceptualization and Index Construction.” Chap. 6 in Organizing Political Parties: Representation, Participation, and Power, eds. Scarrow, Susan E., Webb, Paul D., and Poguntke, Thomas. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Warwick, Paul. 2001. “Coalition Policy in Parliamentary Democracies: Who Gets How Much and Why.” Comparative Political Studies 34 (10): 1212–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Warwick, Paul V., and Druckman, James N.. 2006. “The Portfolio Allocation Paradox: An Investigation into the Nature of a Very Strong but Puzzling Relationship.” European Journal of Political Research 45 (4): 635–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Link

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Nonunitary Parties, Government Formation, and Gamson’s Law
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Nonunitary Parties, Government Formation, and Gamson’s Law
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Nonunitary Parties, Government Formation, and Gamson’s Law
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *