Journal Article

The central-local division of power in the Americas and renewed Mexican federalism: Old institutions, new political realities

Jorge A. Schiavon

in International Journal of Constitutional Law

Published on behalf of The New York University School of Law

Volume 4, issue 2, pages 392-410
Published in print April 2006 | ISSN: 1474-2640
Published online April 2006 | e-ISSN: 1474-2659 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icon/mol010
The central-local division of power in the Americas and renewed Mexican federalism: Old institutions, new political realities

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This paper explores whether the central-local division of power is an important constitutional variable in the political systems of the Americas. It develops a typology of the different kinds of central-local division based on the two specific characteristics differentiating them (federal-unitary and centralized-decentralized). It then constructs a “veto gates and players” model in order to analyze the causal mechanism through which the central-local division of power impacts the constitutional systems, followed by two case studies to support the argument that federalism matters when combined with decentralization (measured through the subnational share of expenditure) and partisan fragmentation in the system (number and nature of political parties). In the process, I analyze the Mexican federal system, arguing that renewed Mexican federalism is a function of the combination of old federal institutions, established in 1917, with the new political distribution of power and decentralization after the 2000 democratic transition.

Journal Article.  7249 words. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law ; UK Politics

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