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Cabinets and Legislative Cartels in Uruguay: examining the Legislative Consequences of Government Formation

Gabinetes y Cárteles Legislativos en Uruguay: examen de las consecuencias legislativas de la formación del gobierno
Kabinette und legislative Kartelle in Uruguay : Bestimmung der legislativen Konsequenzen der Government Formation
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Chasquetti, Daniel

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Abstract Since the return to democracy, Uruguayan presidents have built cabinets of varying natures (majority and minority coalitions, majority and minority parties). Most studies on presidential government assume that the partisan composition of a cabinet is a good predictor of the performance of a government’s legislative program. In this paper I test this hypothesis using Cox and McCubbins’ (1993, 2005) party cartel theory. The results confirm that six of the eight presidential cabinets’ legislative performances were consistent with theoretical expectations, while two were deviant cases. This article also provides a theoretical explanation for these two outliers, highlighting the importance of legislative parties, the presidential style of government, and preferences as regards legislative initiative.

Desde el retorno a la democracia, los presidentes uruguayos han formado gabinetes de diferente naturaleza (coalición mayoritaria, coalición minoritaria, partido mayoritario y partido minoritario). La mayoría de los estudios del gobierno presidencial asumen que la composición partidaria del gabinete es un buen indicador para predecir qué sucederá con el programa legislativo del gobierno. En este trabajo se controla esta hipótesis a partir de la teoría del party-cartel de Cox y McCubbins (1993, 2005). Los resultados del análisis empírico confirman que seis de los ocho gabinetes presentan un desempeño legislativo ajustado a las expectativas teóricas. El resto del artículo brinda una explicación teórica sobre lo ocurrido con los casos desviados, destacando la importancia de los partidos legislativos, del estilo presidencial de gobierno y de las preferencias de sus iniciativas legislativas.
Keywords Latin America; Uruguay; legislative; cartel; government; party; party system; political system; senate; voting; agenda setting function; coalition; historical analysis; comparative research; president; legislation; South America; developing country
Classification Political System, Constitution, Government; Law; Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture
Method applied research
Document language English
Publication Year 2013
Page/Pages p. 67-94
Journal Journal of Politics in Latin America, 5 (2013) 1
ISSN 1868-4890
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works