GV4C4 Half Unit
Legislative Politics: US
This information is for the 2012/13 session.
Dr Cheryl Schonhardt-Bailey
Primarily for students on MSc Political Science and Political Economy. Also an option on MSc Public Policy and Administration, MPA Programme (all streams), the LSE-PKU Double Degree in Public Administration and Government and MSc Comparative Politics. Other MSc students may only attend subject to numbers, their own degree regulations and the permission of the teacher responsible. Students who are taking GV4C6 Legislative Politics: European Union cannot take this course.
This course provides an advanced analysis of the theory and practice of legislative politics in the United States of America.
This course provides an in-depth analysis of the theory and practice of legislative politics. In the early weeks of the course we examine interests-based and ideology-based theories of legislative politics, theories of committee and party organisation, the role of deliberations in congressional debates and hearings, and the legislative process. Later in the course, we examine the legislative process in more detail, using important episodes in US legislative politics, with topics including Depression era trade conflicts (e.g., the Smoot-Hawley Tariff of 1930 and the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act of 1934) , congressional activism and partisan polarization, and social issues (abortion).
Ten one-hour lectures and ten one-and-a-half hour seminars in the LT. Revision seminars will be offered in the third and fourth weeks of the ST.
Students will be required to submit one formative essay in week 6.
Steven S Smith, The American Congress, 4th edn, Cambridge University Press, 2006; Charles Stewart, Analyzing Congress, W W Norton, 2001; D R Mayhew, Congress, The Electoral Connection, Yale University Press, 1974; D R Mayhew, America's Congress: Actions in the Public Sphere, James Madison Through Newt Gingrich, 2000; K T Poole, & H Rosenthal, Congress: A Political-Economic History of Roll Call Voting, Oxford University Press, 1997; F. Maltzman, Competing Principals: Committees, Parties and the Organization of Congress, University of Michigan Press, 1997; G.W. Cox & M.D. McCubbins, Setting the Agenda: Responsible Party Government in the US House of Representatives, Cambridge University Press, 2005 ; G. Mucciaroni & P.J. Quick, Deliberative Choices: Debating Public Policy in Congress (University of Chicago Press, 2006).
Two parts: (1) a two-hour unseen written examination in June, accounting for 67% of the mark (consisting of short reply and essay questions); and (2) an essay of 4,000 words on one of the topics, which must apply the theoretical issues to empirical data, to be submitted at the end of Week 1 of ST, accounting for the remaining 33% of the mark.