Ideological Influences on Governance and Regulation: The Comparative Case of Supreme Courts
Regulation & Governance, Forthcoming
41 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2016 Last revised: 28 Feb 2017
Date Written: December 15, 2016
A key influence on governance and regulation is the ideology of individual decisionmakers. Still, certain branches of government — such as courts — while wielding wide ranging regulatory powers, are expected to do so with no attitudinal influence. We posit a dynamic response model to investigate attitudinal behavior in different national courts. Our ideological scores are estimated based on probability models that formalize the assumption that judicial decisions consist of ideological, strategic and jurisprudential components. The Dynamic Comparative Attitudinal Measure (DCAM) estimates the attitudinal decision-making on the institution as a whole. Additionally, we estimate Ideological Ideal Point Preference (IIPP) for individual justices. Empirical results with original data for political and religious rights rulings in the Supreme Courts of the U.S, Canada, India, the Philippines and Israel corroborate the measures’ validity. Future studies can utilize IIPP and DCAM to cover additional courts, legal spheres and time frames, and to estimate government deference.
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