Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=224432
 
 

Citations



 


 



Congress and the Political Expansion of the United States District Courts


John M. De Figueiredo


Duke University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Gerald S. Gryski


Auburn University - Department of Political Science

Emerson H. Tiller


Northwestern University - School of Law

Gary Zuk


Auburn University - Department of Political Science


American Law and Economics Review

Abstract:     
Expanding the number of U.S. district judgeships is often justified as a response to expanding caseloads. Increasing judgeships during unified government, however, allows Congress and the President to engage in political (patronage and ideological) control of the federal district courts. This paper examines empirically the relative importance of caseload pressure and political motives for Congress to expand the number of federal district judgeships. We demonstrate that politics dominates the timing of judgeship expansion in the U.S. District Courts. We also show that both politics and caseload affect the actual size of those timed expansions. In particular, we find that before 1970, Congress seemed to have strong political motivations for the size of an expansion. After 1970, Congress became much more attentive to caseload considerations.

Accepted Paper Series


Not Available For Download

Date posted: April 18, 2001  

Suggested Citation

de Figueiredo, John M. and Gryski, Gerald S. and Tiller, Emerson H. and Zuk, Gary, Congress and the Political Expansion of the United States District Courts. American Law and Economics Review. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=224432

Contact Information

John M. De Figueiredo (Contact Author)
Duke University ( email )
100 Fuqua Drive
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Gerald S. Gryski
Auburn University - Department of Political Science ( email )
Auburn, AL 36849
United States
(334) 844-5370 (Phone)
Emerson H. Tiller
Northwestern University - School of Law ( email )
375 E. Chicago Ave
Unit 1505
Chicago, IL 60611
United States
Gary Zuk
Auburn University - Department of Political Science ( email )
Auburn, AL 36849
United States
(334) 844-5370 (Phone)
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