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The behavioural consequences of institutional rules: republicans in the US house

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The Republicans gained a majority in the US House from the 1994 elections, and upon taking office they rewrote the rules that determine legislative power relations. This paper combines a 1996 attitudinal survey of US Representatives with demographic information, status within the House, and party position to examine the impact of the 1995 rule changes on satisfaction, ambition, and retirement. This paper demonstrates that member reactions to reform are explained jointly by their partisanship and their relative position within their party. Senior members of any party dislike rules making power more exclusive , and dissatisfaction increases the likelihood of retirement.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Political Science Department, Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida 2: Political Science, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois 3: Political Science, Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana

Publication date: March 1, 2005


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