While research on the influence of divided government upon legislative outputs is available, relatively little identifies the effects of divided government on legislative control of bureaucratic discretion. Some suggest that inter-branch conflict between the President and Congress leads legislators to seek to retain legislative control over the bureaucracy. As a result, periods of divided government increase statutory control and reduce agency autonomy. Close examination of statutes creating each federal agency between 1946 and 1997 reveal that divided government increases specificity of statutory control. In addition, the particular type of divided government involving split partisan control between the chambers of Congress fosters greater specific statutory control when new government agencies are created.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Public Administration