Organized Interests and Agenda Setting in the U.S. Supreme Court Revisited

16 Pages Posted: 17 Jul 2012  

Gregory A. Caldeira

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Political Science

John R. Wright

Independent

Christopher J. Zorn

Pennsylvania State University

Date Written: July 15, 2012

Abstract

We reevaluate the influence of amici curiae on the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to grant certiorari. Using expanded data on four representative Court terms, we find that at the same time that the number of amicus filings on certiorari have grown -- and perhaps owing to it -- the influence of those briefs on the probability of the Court granting certiorari has steadily declined between 1968 and 2007. In addition, we find that the positive influence of briefs in opposition to certiorari noted in some earlier work appears to be an artifact of a particular Term. Among other things, these findings hold implications for the extent to which case selection effects might bias empirical scholarship on the Supreme Court.

Keywords: Supreme Court, certiorari, agenda-setting, amici curiae, judicial politics

JEL Classification: K49

Suggested Citation

Caldeira, Gregory A. and Wright, John R. and Zorn, Christopher J., Organized Interests and Agenda Setting in the U.S. Supreme Court Revisited (July 15, 2012). 7th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2109497 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2109497

Gregory A. Caldeira

Ohio State University (OSU) - Department of Political Science ( email )

2140 Derby Hall 154 North Oval Mall
Columbus, OH 43210-1373
United States
614-292-2880 (Phone)
614-292-1146 (Fax)

John (Jack) R. Wright

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Christopher J. Zorn (Contact Author)

Pennsylvania State University ( email )

University Park
State College, PA 16802
United States

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