Do Congressional Leaders Detect and Deter Cartel Cheating? Evidence From Committee Assignments
Social Science and Global Studies
The present study extends recent work in the public choice literature that suggests that monopoly legislators form cartel-like organizations in an effort to extract greater benefits in the political process. With any cartel organization cheating is expected to arise. If any political cartel (or business cartel) is to be successful, cheating must be detected and punished. Previous work examining the voting behavior and committee placement of Congressional Black Caucus members presents observable evidence of cartel success, but it fails to examine how cheating by individual Congressional Black Caucus members is detected and deterred. This study points out that (1) use of ADA voting records by Democratic House leaders renders "cartel cheating" easily detectable, (2) any observed cheating is punished by Democratic leaders through placement on less desirable House committees, and (3) such a punishment diminishes the "legislative" level of representation that an individual Representative can provide.
Economics of Governance
(2003). Do Congressional Leaders Detect and Deter Cartel Cheating? Evidence From Committee Assignments. Economics of Governance, 4(2), 161-175.
Available at: https://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/20944