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Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration BY DAVID STADELMANN UNIVERSITY OF BAYREUTH (GERMANY) AND CREMA (SWITZERLAND)

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Presentation on theme: "Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration BY DAVID STADELMANN UNIVERSITY OF BAYREUTH (GERMANY) AND CREMA (SWITZERLAND)"— Presentation transcript:

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2 Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration BY DAVID STADELMANN UNIVERSITY OF BAYREUTH (GERMANY) AND CREMA (SWITZERLAND) MARCO PORTMANN UNIVERSIT OF FRIBOURG (SWITZERLAND) REINER EICHENBERGER UNIVERSITY OF FRIBOURG (SWITZERLAND) AND CREMA (SWITZERLAND)

3 Introduction Are public servants interested in weakening separation of powers … between administration/executive and legislature? Analyze effects of links to public service on decisions of parliamentary representatives … with respect to separation of powers … while holding constituents preferences constant. Main result: Representatives, who are public servants, vote for weakening of separation of powers. Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 2

4 Introduction: Challenges & Solutions Empirical challenges: Decisions on separations of powers are rare. Measure individual representatives decisions + links to public service? Measure preferences of constituents for/against separation of powers? Proposed solution: Referendum on separation of powers Referendum on eligibility of federal public servants in Switzerland in 1922 Constituents reveal preferences (see Schneider et al. 1981) and parliamentary representatives decide on same issue Natural measure of congruence (Brunner et al AEJ, Portmann et al PC, Carey and Hix 2013 PC) Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 3

5 Institutional setting, data and identification Analyze initiative in 1922 demanding a change in the separation of powers Make federal public servants eligible to parliament Replace article 77 in the constitution of May 29, 1874 Advanced by the Federal Association of Public Servants, Employees, and Laborers Distinctive features of data: Constituents vote on initiative measure of revealed preferences Parliamentary representatives vote on same issue. Know if parliamentary representatives had profession in (or links to) public service and other individual characteristics, and district characteristics, and… Analyze if public servants vote for weakening separation of powers holding constituents preferences constant. Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 4

6 Individual decisions of parliamentary representatives regarding separation of powers are known Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger5 Sources: Burgerbiblioithek Bern: Marzili; Bundeshaus (S); Altstadt, obere, 1900

7 Voting on the eligibility of federal public servants – Results of initiative in constituencies in 1922 Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger6 Sources: own construction based on Année Politique Suisse 2011

8 Identifying local public servants (identifying family links to public service and life-history based measure of links to public service) Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger7 Sources: Historical Dictionary of Switzerland/Historisches Lexikon der Schweiz

9 Estimation strategy Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 8

10 Representatives with profession in public service support eligibility of federal public servants independently of constituents preferences Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger9

11 Other robustness tests support results Results hold when analyzing a life history based measure of ties to public service. Stronger results for public servants from large districts. Results hold when weighting is applied. Results hold when profession interacted with age. Other robustness tests also lead to same conclusions. Clustering changes, logit, probit, region fixed effects etc. Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 10

12 Conclusions Exploit rare case of separation of powers where … … legislative decisions by individual representatives are known … constituents preferences are observed … links to public service are known Show that public servants vote for weakening separation of powers Public servants have a higher probability to support eligibility of federal public servants Public servants deviate from constituents preferences Political consequences Evidence for conflicts of interests of public servants Fraction of public servants in parliaments > fraction of public servants in population Voting against the separation of powers between legislature and administration Stadelmann/Portmann/Eichenberger Slide 11


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