Modeling Collegial Courts (3): Judicial Objectives, Opinion Content, Voting and Adjudication Equilibria

34 Pages Posted: 10 Nov 2008 Last revised: 23 Nov 2008

Charles M. Cameron

Princeton University - Department of Political Science; Princeton University - Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Lewis A. Kornhauser

New York University School of Law

Date Written: October 10, 2008

Abstract

We present a formal game theoretic model of adjudication by a collegial court. Distinctively, the model incorporates dispute resolution as well as judicial policy making and indicates the relationship between the two. It explicitly addresses joins, concurrences and dissents, and assumes judicial rather than legislative or electoral objectives by the actors. The model makes clear predictions about the plurality opinion's location in policy space; the case's disposition; and the size and composition of the disposition-coalition, the join-coalition, and the concurrence-coalition. These elements of adjudication equilibrium vary with the identity of the opinion writer and with the location of the case. In general, the opinion is not located at the ideal policy of the median judge. The model suggests new directions for empirical work on judicial politics.

Keywords: collegial courts, adjudiciation, judicial politics

JEL Classification: C72, D72, D79, K40

Suggested Citation

Cameron, Charles M. and Kornhauser, Lewis A., Modeling Collegial Courts (3): Judicial Objectives, Opinion Content, Voting and Adjudication Equilibria (October 10, 2008). NYU Law and Economics Research Paper No. 08-54; NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 08-56. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1296071 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1296071

Charles M. Cameron

Princeton University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Corwin Hall
Princeton, NJ 08544-1013
United States

Princeton University - Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Princeton University
Princeton, NJ 08544-1021
United States

Lewis A. Kornhauser (Contact Author)

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States
(212) 998-6175 (Phone)
(212) 995-4341 (Fax)

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