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Veto Players


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Table of Contents

List of Figures ix List of Tables xi Preface and Acknowledgments xiii Introduction 1 PART I: VETO PLAYERS THEORY 17 One: Individual Veto Players 19 Two: Collective Veto Players 38 PART II: VETO PLAYERS AND INSTITUTIONAL ANALYSIS 65 Three: Regimes: Nondemocratic, Presidential, and Parliamentary 67 Four: Governments and Parliaments 91 Five: Referendums 116 Six: Federalism, Bicameralism, and Qualified Majorities 136 PART III: POLICY EFFECTS OF VETO PLAYERS 161 Seven: Legislation 165 Eight: Macroeconomic Policies 187 PART IV: SYSTEMIC EFFECTS OF VETO PLAYERS 207 Nine: Government Stability 209 Ten: Judiciary and Bureaucracies 222 Eleven: Veto Players Analysis of European Union Institutions 248 Conclusion 283 Bibliography 291 Index 309

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This book will be a landmark. It is the culmination of a decade of hard analytical and empirical work through which Tsebelis has single-handedly transformed comparative government. In spite of its analytical precision, the writing is highly accessible. It is safe to predict that this will be among the most influential political science texts of the coming decade. -- Fritz W. Scharpf, Director of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, Cologne Veto Players ranks as the most important theoretical argument to emerge in comparative politics over the last 10-15 years. Tsebelis elegantly lays out a set of simple but rigorous concepts tied to the legislative process. These concepts and their underlying dynamics link regimes, party systems, and federalism to policy outcomes in provocative and profound ways. Veto Players has changed and is likely to continue to change our fundamental understanding of institutional politics. -- Barry Ames, University of Pittsburgh Veto Players is an excellent book that is likely to be recognized as a seminal contribution to the study of political institutions. It will find its way onto reading lists in just about every self-respecting institution in the United States and many abroad. Tsebelis covers an amazing range of institutions. His book is cogent in its style, parsimonious in its argument, and sweeping in its scope. -- Kaare Strom, University of California, San Diego Tsebelis shows that the concept of a 'veto' player can provide a great deal of leverage for analyzing apparently very diverse institutional structures. The book is a major advance theoretically and methodologically and should have the effect of using theory to break down artificial boundaries between the subfields of Comparative Politics, International Relations, and American politics. -- John Ferejohn, Carolyn Munro Professor, Stanford University From the preface to the Italian edition: "Tsebelis has produced what is today the most original theory for the understanding of the dynamics of contemporary regimes... This book promises to remain a lasting contribution to political analysis. -- Gianfranco Pasquino, Professor of Political Science, University of Bologna

About the Author

George Tsebelis is Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the author of "Nested Games: Rational Choice in Comparative Politics" and coauthor of "Bicameralism". The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Hoover National Fellowship, and a Russell Sage Fellowship, he has published numerous papers on the institutions of the European Union and on comparative institutional analysis.


This is a big book and an important one. It completes a program on which George Tsebelis has been working for ten years or more. With luck, it may revolutionize the systematic study of comparative government. -- Iain McLean Journal of Legislative Studies

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