The Consequences of Divided Government

John J. Coleman and David C. W. Parker

in The Oxford Handbook of the American Presidency

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780199238859
Published online May 2010 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of American Politics

 The Consequences of Divided Government

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This article starts by asking: what is the nature of political parties in a system of separated powers? It then describes the most recent empirical manifestation of that debate: does party control of government matter? It also discusses what has yet to be learned about divided government and provides some thoughts about future research directions. The policy production of the president and Congress is greater in periods of unified government. Much of the research on divided government has focused on legislative outputs. The president's use of his commander in chief powers also varies systematically depending on party control. Furthermore, it explores the avenues that may benefit research into the presidency and largely set to the side other possible research directions regarding divided government.

Keywords: divided government; presidency; political parties; party control; Congress; American president; powers; policy production

Article.  9232 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; US Politics ; Public Policy

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