Presentation on theme: "Cabinets Majoritarian democracy: Single party majority executive"— Presentation transcript:
1 Cabinets Majoritarian democracy: Single party majority executive Consensual democracy: Parties share the executive officeTwo factors important:Number of partiesExecutives support in parliament
2 Classification of Cabinets Cabinet supportMinimal winningOversizedMinorityMost majoritarian: Single party & minimal winningMost consensual: Multiparty and oversized
3 Coalition Theories Parliamentary government Definition: The cabinet/executive relies on the parliament’s confidence.Hence, a majority of legislators must not wish to remove the cabinetElections result in a distribution of parliamentary seats among partiesWhich parties form a cabinet?
4 Coalition TheoriesIf a majority party exists it is likely to form a cabinet by itselfException: Wartime coalitionsWhat if no party has a majority?Can we predict which parties form a coalition?What factors are likely to matter?Distribution of seatsPolicy preferences
5 Coalition Theories Minimal winning coalitions Minimum size coalitions Coalition parties have a majority of seatsRemoving any party from coalition reduces it to a minorityMinimum size coalitionsMinimal winningSmallest in terms of legislative seats
6 Coalition Theories Minimum number of parties Minimal range coalition Minimal winningFewest number of partiesMinimal range coalitionParties with similar policy preferences form a coalition
7 Coalition Theories Minimal connected winning coalitions Not minimal winningConnected – does not exclude parties with moderate policy preference relative to other cabinet partiesPolicy viable coalitionsMinimal winningAlways includes the party of the median legislator (or median party)
8 PredictionsA B C D EMinimal winning: ABC, ADE, BCD, BE, CEMinimum size: ADEMinimum #parties: BE, CEMinimal range: ABC, BCD, CEMinimal connected: ABC, BCD, CDEPolicy viable: ABC, BCD, CE
9 Minority & Oversized Cabinets All the theories predict the formation of a (minimal) majority cabinetCabinets are, however, often minority or oversized cabinetsMinority cabinets almost the rule in Sweden, DenmarkNearly 1/3 of all cabinets are minority cabinetsAbout 1/5 are oversized
10 Minority & Oversized Cabinets How do we explain this ‘anomaly’?Cabinet participation can be costlyAccountability may harm parties electorallyMay decrease likelihood of future cabinet participation (loss of identity)Oversized cabinetsNarrow majorities dangerousInsurance against defectionsMinimizes individual legislator’s bargaining power
11 Minority & Oversized Cabinets Parties care about policyThus, B may be better of in coalition ABC than coalition BCExternal threatsNeed to minimize domestic conflictInstitutionsInvestiture vote (note Sweden)Constructive vote of no confidenceVotes of confidence in FranceCommittees
12 Minority & Oversized Cabinets Requirements regarding cabinet membership (Belgium – linguistic)Need to change constitution or legislation requiring super-majorities
13 Minority CabinetsWhere do minority cabinets fit into the majoritarian-consensual classificationMinority cabinets tend to be single-party but do not have majority supportTwo types can be distinguishedContinuous bargaining over policy‘Majority cabinets in disguise’=> The former is more common – similar to oversized cabinets?
14 Presidential Cabinets Differences between parliamentary and presidential cabinets:Presidential cabinets do not rely on the confidence of the legislatureParliamentary cabinets are collegial, presidential cabinets are not
15 Unusual Cabinets Austria The U.S. Grand coalition cabinets 1949-1966 Minimal winning but composed of the two largest parties (holding 92% of seats)Oversized?The U.S.Partisan cabinetsToken opposition members
16 Unusual Cabinets Japan LDP has a majority from 1976 to 1993 Behaves like a minority cabinet – attempts to build oversized coalitions to pass legislation
17 Cabinets in 36 Democracies Measuring majoritarianism:Average of percentage of minimal winning and one-party cabinetsProblematic?Relationship with party systemStrong negative relationshipSurprising?
18 Prime Ministerial Power Presidents have great control over their cabinetsIn parliamentary system the power of the Prime Minister can vary greatlyRelationship between the PM’s power and concentration of power in the cabinetFinds strong relationship
19 Summary Classifying cabinets Theories of coalition formation AdvancesRelationship between type and number of partiesInteresting?Small number of parties => Majorities more frequent
20 Executive-Legislative Relations Majoritarian: Executive DominanceConsensual: Legislative DominanceParliamentary vs. Presidential Gov’tReliance on legislature’s confidence vs. fixed termSelection by legislature vs. popular electionCollegial executive vs. one-person executive
21 Parliamentary vs. Presidential Government Many combination are possibleEmpirically there are only ‘pure’ presidential or parliamentary systemsSwitzerland is the only exceptions.Semi-presidentialismVary in strength of presidentsFrance, Austria, Iceland, Portugal, FinlandLijphart – depends on president’s supportDissolution power
22 Israel (Is Lijphart right?) Before 1996 – ParliamentaryNow:Prime Minister is directly electedParliament elected at same timeParliament can dismiss Prime MinisterPrime Minister can dissolve ParliamentEither requires a new election?Similarity to a presidential system
23 Parliamentary vs. Presidential Government Separation of Powers:In presidential systems it implies that the same person can not serve in both legislative and executive branchIn parliamentary systems, generally, cabinet members are legislatorsNetherlands, Norway and Luxembourg the exception
24 Parliamentary vs. Presidential Government Presidents don’t have the right to dissolve the legislatureExceptions: France, IsraelIn parliamentary system dissolution rights may or may not existNorway: Fixed termRestricted dissolution rightsUnlimited: UK
25 Parliamentary vs. Presidential Government Head of state/governmentPresidential systems: President is both head of state and governmentParliamentary systems: Monarch/President head of state, PM head of GovernmentBotswana: PM is bothSouth Africa under Nelson Mandela
26 South AfricaT.he President is elected for five year term by the parliamentThe Cabinet consists of the President, as head of the Cabinet, a Deputy President and Ministers. The President appoints the Deputy President and Ministers, assigns their powers and functions, and may dismiss them.The President:must select the Deputy President and Ministers from among the members of the National Assembly;may select no more than two Ministers from outside the Assembly.The Deputy President must assist the President in the execution of the functions of government.
27 Separation & Balance of Power Not a simple relationship between presidentialism/parliamentarism and balance of powerPresidents, as well as PMs, can be either strong or weak (Belgium vs. UK, US vs France)
28 Presidential Power Reactive & Proactive Powers Veto PowerDecree PowerStrength & Cohesion of Presidential PartiesPopular electionClaim to legitimacy
29 Presidential Power Dependence on Partisan Power Constitutional Powers May lead to instability of powerConstitutional PowersGenerally stableVetoes and Decrees still work ‘fairly’ wellPopularity????….
30 How do we measure balance of power? Cabinet durability as an indicator for parliamentary governmentQ: May inhibit cabinet’s ability to pass a coherent policy program, but does it shift power to the legislature?The fourth French Republic? Italy?Cabinet stability vs. Regime stabilityHow to measure cabinet durability?
31 How do we measure balance of power? When does a cabinet end? When does a new one begin?Important factors:Partisan compositionElectionsChange in PMChange in type of cabinet (winning, minority, oversized?)Lijphart: Combines measures.
32 How do we measure balance of power? Lijphart: Nothing more stable than the U.K. ???Lijphart: U.S.? Switzerland?Term limits?
33 Cabinet Type and Cabinet Durability Durability: Minimal winning party > Minimal winning coalition > Minority party > Oversized > Minority coalitionCaretaker cabinetsShort duration of oversized cabinets. Why?
34 Executive Dominance and Majoritarian Governments Figure 7.2Shows a fairly strong relationshipHowever, executive dominance is really durability and ‘majoritarian cabinet’ is really percentage of minimal winning, one party governments=> Seems like somewhat an uninteresting finding
35 Summary Attempt to measure balance of power What is power? Ability to pass legislation/influence policy – even if legislator opposesWhat is the outcome?Better measures? Veto power, Decree power, Agenda setting, etc…PresidentLegislature
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