Pursuing the president's program
Kimbrell, Thomas Matthew
MetadataShow full item record
Presidents bring to office a set of personal policy preferences and priorities which they wish to see eventuated during their time in office. How presidents choose to pursue their legislative programs has profound implications for the policymaking process as well as policy outcomes. I propose that presidents choose between traditional legislative bargaining and unilateral action strategically in order to maximize policy influence. That is, for any given piece of the president's policy program, the president will choose the policymaking strategy he believes will bring about a policy outcome that is closest to his ideal point. Specifically, I expect that presidents will act unilaterally more frequently as the size of their policy program increases during periods of unified government and when Congress is more fragmented. My analysis indicates that president's do issue more significant executive orders as their policy program increases in size during unified government.