Maintaining the Organizational Cartel: How Nancy Pelosi Won Election as Speaker of the House
17 Pages Posted: 21 Jul 2020
Date Written: February 24, 2020
Nancy Pelosi’s 2019 candidacy for the House Speaker-ship faced significant opposition within the Democratic Caucus, even though her party had won control of the chamber and she faced no challenger. We provide statistical evidence that opposition to Pelosi was ideological, age-related, and more prevalent among party outsiders. Pelosi managed to overcome that opposition, win election as Speaker, and thus maintain her party’s organizational cartel power in part by giving benefits in exchange for support from rebels who were least likely to actually vote against her. These findings are consistent with the goal salience theory of leadership selection and vote buying models of congressional coalition-building.
Keywords: Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, Organizational Cartel, Leadership Race
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