Vintage Papers


       With J. Ronnie Davis): "The Paradox of Vote Trading: Effects of Decision Rules and Voting Strategies on Externalities," American Political Science Review, v. 69: 929-942 (September l975): We extend the argument of Riker and Brams on the "paradox of vote trading" to unanimity decision rules and prove that if voters attach equal utility to passage or defeat of legislation, no decision rule can overcome the paradox of vote trading.  However, if the voters attach more utility to the defeat of legislation, then either majority rule with vote trading or a unanimity rule without vote trading will be Pareto optimal.  The paradox of vote trading can only be avoided, more generally, when all legislators agree to trade.

    With M. Margaret Conway) "The Responsible Congressional Electorate: Watergate, the Economy, and Vote Choice in 1974," American Political Science Review, 79: 788-803 (September 1985): Several authors, notably Gary Jacobson and Samuel Kernell, argued that the 1974 election was not a referendum on either Watergate or the state of the economy.  We argue that this was true for many voters, but using the 1972-74 American National Election Studies panel, we show that voters who shifted from voting for Republican to Democratic House candidates from 1972 to 1974 disapproved of the state of the economy and of the pardon of President Richard Nixon by President Gerald R. Ford.




With John L. Sullivan: "Congressional Behavior and Electoral Marginality," American Journal of Political Science, 22: 536-553 (August l978): Are members of Congress from marginal districts more moderate?  Using a survey of members and their opponents of Congress conducted by Congressional Quarterly for NBC News in 1966 and estimating constituency opinion by simulation, we show that members from marginal districts are not more moderate, nor do they converge to the positions of their opponents.  However, members who stray too far from public opinion are more likely to lose than members who are closer to public opinion if their opponents are closer to constituency opinion.  We argue that moderation is not the same thing as proximity to constitutency opinion.

    "The Pitfalls of Per Capita," American Journal of Political Science, 20: 125-133 (February l976) and "Straight Lines and Straight Thinking: Can All of These Econometricians Be Wrong?", 2l: 183-191 (February l977): Many data analysts routinely use per capita measures in aggregate analyses without adequate concern for their theoretical justification.  I show that such transformations can lead to spuriously high or low correlations and argue that per capita measures should only be used when they are theoretically justified.  The second article responds to a critique of my original essay by William Lyons.



  "Comity in Context: Confrontation in Historical Perspective," British Journal of Political Science, 21:45-77 (January 1991): This paper sets out the argument of my book, The Decline of Comity in Congress (University of Michigan Press, 1993).  Here I examine the increasing incivility in Congress since the 1970s and compare it to the incivility in the pre-Civil War period in the United States.

    "The Case of the Vanishing Liberal Senators: The House Did It," British Journal of Political Science, 11:105-113 (January l98l). Reprinted in Allan Bogue et al., eds., The Congress of the United States, 1789-1989 (Brooklyn: Carlson Publishing Inc., 1991): Democrats lose considerable ground in the 1978 Senate elections, but held their own in the House elections.  I gathered data on trips home by Senators and show that Senators who went home more frequently were more likely to win--and that this relationship was particularly prominent for the West--and that voters seemed to compare the home styles of their Representatives and Senators based upon responses to survey questions on member contacts.


 "Casework and Institutional Design: Redeeming Promises in the Promised Land," Legislative Studies Quarterly, 10:35-52 (February 1985): Why do Israeli members of   the Israeli Knesset perform casework when they are all elected in a single national constituency? 

  With Ronald E. Weber, "Partisan Cues and Decision Loci in U.S. State Legislatures,"  Legislative Studies Quarterly, 2:423-444 (November 1977): Using a 50-state survey of state legislators, we find that legislators who show strong support for the party system are more likely to take their cues from legislative party leaders, especially if they come from districts that are typical of their legislative party.

        With Ronald E. Weber, "U.S. State Legislators' Opinions and Perceptions of Constituency Attitudes,"  Legislative Studies Quarterly, 4:563-585 (November 1979): We measure statewide public opinion through a simulation technique and from our survey of state legislators in the 50 states, we examine the link between public opinion and constituency opinion.  We find that there is substantial slippage in congruence.

        “Let The Chits Fall Where They May? Executive and Constituency Influences on Congressional Voting on NAFTA,” Legislative Studies Quarterly, 23: 347-371 (August, 1998): In the Congressional debate over the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1993, President Bill Clinton concentrated his lobbying on members who were either undecided or opposed to the accord and who had received large campaign contributions from business.  I created an endogenous measure of lobbying based upon the whom the President contacted and this measure had a powerful effect on how Democratic members of the House voted on the free trade accord.



“Trade Winds: NAFTA and the Rational Public,” Political Behavior, 20: 341-360 (December 1998): Conventional wisdom argues that support for the North American Free Trade Agreement increased dramatically after a televised debate between business executive Ross Perot and Vice President Al Gore.  Using a series of NBC/Wall Street Journal polls, I show that this was not the case and that support for the accord increased slowly over the course of several months.  By the end of the debate both the most and least interested citizens linked their position on the accord to their general positions on free trade and to their evaluations of the leaders on both sides of the debate--rather than upon their own self-interest.



"Comparative State Policy Formation, Interparty Competition, and Malapportionment: A New Look at 'V. O. Key's Hypotheses'," Journal of Politics, 40:409-432 (May 1978): A large literature in comparative state politics has been devoted to debating whether interparty competition or malapportionment led to more liberal or conservative policy-making in the American states.  I argue that these debates are misplaced since Key's arguments on both interparty competition and apportionment were far more nuanced--and that there have been few systematic attempts to test the more theoretically rigorous hypotheses offered by Key.

    (with Ronald E. Weber) "Policy Congruence and American State Elites: Descriptive Representation and Electoral Accountability," Journal of Politics, 45: 183-197 (February 1983): How closely aligned are state elites to the mass public?  Using our survey of state legislators, bureaucrats, and county party leaders and national public opinion surveys, we find that an electoral accountability explanation is a better explanation of policy congruence than is descriptive representation: State legislators are considerably closer to the public than are bureaucrats or county party leaders.

(with Ronald E. Weber) "Public Support for Pro-Choice Abortion Policies in the Nation and States: Changes and Stability After the Roe and Doe Decisions," Michigan Law Review, 77:1772-1789 (August 1979); reprinted in Karl Schneider and Marls A. Vinovskis, ed., The Law and Politics of Abortion (Lexington: Lexington Books, 1980), pp. 206-223:  Public support for abortion increased substantially among most demographic groups between the late 1960s and prior to the Supreme Court's decision in 1973, Roe v. Wade, overturning restrictions on abortion.  We simulate state public opinion and find that public support for abortion rights increased in most states as well.



                                     Papers on Canadian Politics


    "Multiple Party Identifiers in Canada: Participation and Affect," Journal of Politics, 51: 993-1003 (November 1989): Canadians, unlike Americans, often identify with different parties at the federal and provincial levels of government.  I show that split-level identifiers are no less efficacious and are no less likely to participate in politics than single-party identifiers.  Split-level identification instead reflects the political options available to citizens.

  "Splitting Image: Partisan Affiliations in Canada's 'Two Political Worlds'," American Journal of Political Science, 34: 961-981 (November 1990): Why do many Canadians identify with different parties at the federal and provincial levels?  One account stresses the weaker party ties of Canadians compared to Americans, another focuses more on the structure of political competition and attitudes toward the federal system among Canadians.  The data suggest more support for the latter explanation.

"Looking Forward and Looking Backward: Prospective and Retrospective Voting in the 1980 Federal Elections in Canada," British Journal of Political Science, 19:495-513 (October 1989): Previous analyses of the 1980 federal election in Canada have failed to show any policy content.  I argue that in addition to evaluations of leadership, the election was shaped by both prospective and retrospective evaluations--and that voters responded to the issues that elites were focusing on, notably energy and national unity.




“Religion and Civic Engagement in Canada and the United States,” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, 41: 239-254 (June, 2002): The factors underlying volunteering are largely the same in Canada and the United States--most notably in both countries conservative Christians are more likely to volunteer than are more liberal Protestants (even though there are fewer conservative Christians in Canada).  There is no evidence that Catholics volunteer less in Canada than do Protestants.


                                                            Back to current papers


                                                                            Back to home page