External Enforcement

in Rules and Restraint

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780226682594
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226682617 | DOI:
External Enforcement

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This chapter, which investigates the effect of spending limits, supermajority voting rules, and executive veto authority on budgetary bargaining under exogenous enforcement, also considers both perfect and imperfect enforcement, since each type sheds light on the design of budget rules. It shows the imperfect enforcement of legislative budget rules by addressing the impacts of delegation to an agency or court for enforcement. Centralized spending and decentralized projects induce preferences for inefficient pork-barrel projects. In a majority-rule distributive politics setting, the agenda setter exploits the legislature and secures a large, inefficient project for his district. The spending limit shrinks spending, as well as most projects, to smaller-than-efficient levels. Externally enforceable rules can theoretically be effective at limiting spending. Spending limits and supermajority coalitions have the effect of lowering spending and improving legislative welfare.

Keywords: spending limits; voting rules; executive veto authority; budgetary bargaining; exogenous enforcement; budget rules; supermajority coalitions; legislative welfare

Chapter.  8043 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: US Politics

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