When Does Government Limit the Impact of Voter Initiatives? The Politics of Implementation and Enforcement

Posted: 2 Jul 2008

See all articles by Arthur Lupia

Arthur Lupia

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - Department of Political Science

Abstract

In many states and localities, citizens make laws by initiative. Many winning initiatives, however, are later ignored or altered substantially. Why? Our answer emerges from two under appreciated aspects of the initiative process. First, many initiatives contain policies that powerful governmental actors once prevented from passing via traditional legislative channels. Second, implementation can require these actors to comply with policies they once opposed. The question then becomes: When do governmental actors comply with winning initiatives? We use a model and examples to clarify the post-election politics of initiative compliance. Our findings defy conventional explanations of how initiatives change public policy.

Suggested Citation

Lupia, Arthur, When Does Government Limit the Impact of Voter Initiatives? The Politics of Implementation and Enforcement. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1154723

Arthur Lupia (Contact Author)

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - Department of Political Science ( email )

Ann Arbor, MI 48109
United States
734-647-7549 (Phone)
734-764-3341 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: www.umich.edu/~lupia

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