Measuring Constitutional Loyalty: Evidence from the COVID-19 Pandemic

30 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2022

See all articles by Jerg Gutmann

Jerg Gutmann

University of Hamburg - Institute of Law and Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Roee Sarel

Institute of Law and Economics, University of Hamburg

Stefan Voigt

University of Hamburg - Institute of Law & Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: February 4, 2022

Abstract

Constitutional loyalty, the importance ascribed to complying with constitutional rules, is difficult to measure across countries due to differences in context, history, and culture. We overcome this challenge by exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic as an ideal setting in which societies around the world face a novel and similar public health crisis, inducing governments to adopt comparable policies. Based on a survey carried out in 53 countries around the world in 2021, we show that citizens’ support for COVID-19 mitigation policies declines if courts signal doubts about their constitutionality. We further demonstrate that this effect of constitutional loyalty depends on citizens’ characteristics, such as their confidence in the courts and their moral convictions.

Keywords: Constitutional loyalty, Constitutions, Courts, COVID-19, Judicial power

JEL Classification: D02, H12, I18, K40, P48

Suggested Citation

Gutmann, Jerg and Sarel, Roee and Voigt, Stefan, Measuring Constitutional Loyalty: Evidence from the COVID-19 Pandemic (February 4, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4026007 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4026007

Jerg Gutmann

University of Hamburg - Institute of Law and Economics ( email )

Johnsallee 35
Hamburg, 20148
Germany

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) ( email )

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Roee Sarel (Contact Author)

Institute of Law and Economics, University of Hamburg ( email )

Johnsallee 35
Hamburg, 20148
Germany

Stefan Voigt

University of Hamburg - Institute of Law & Economics ( email )

Johnsallee 35
Hamburg, 20148
Germany
+49-40-428385782 (Phone)
+49-40-428386794 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Downloads
153
Abstract Views
714
Rank
341,335
PlumX Metrics