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Judicial Independence and Party Politics in the Kelsenian Constitutional Courts: The Case of Portugal

47 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2008  

Sofia Amaral-Garcia

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)

Nuno M. Garoupa

Texas A&M University School of Law; Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law

Veronica Grembi

Mediterranean University of Reggio Calabria

Date Written: July 7, 2008

Abstract

In this paper we test to what extent the Kelsenian-type of constitutional judges are independent from political parties by studying of the Portuguese Constitutional Court. The results yield three main conclusions. First, constitutional judges in Portugal are quite sensitive to their political affiliations and their political party's presence in government when voting. Second, peer pressure is very relevant. Third, the 1997 reform that was enacted to increase judicial independence has had no robust statistically significant effect.

Keywords: constitutional courts, judges, Portugal, empirical legal studies

JEL Classification: K0

Suggested Citation

Amaral-Garcia, Sofia and Garoupa, Nuno M. and Grembi, Veronica, Judicial Independence and Party Politics in the Kelsenian Constitutional Courts: The Case of Portugal (July 7, 2008). U Illinois Law & Economics Research Paper No. LE08-21. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1156281 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1156281

Sofia Amaral-Garcia

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Nuno M. Garoupa (Contact Author)

Texas A&M University School of Law ( email )

1515 Commerce St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
United States

Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law ( email )

Lisboa
Portugal

Veronica Grembi

Mediterranean University of Reggio Calabria ( email )

Via dei Bianchi, 2
Reggio Calabria, Reggio Calabria 89127
Italy

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