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The Federal Design Dilemma
Congress and Intergovernmental Delegation

$100.00 (C)

  • Date Published: September 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107110465

$ 100.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • The level of government responsible for implementing policies affects intent, services provided, and ultimate outcomes. The decision about where to locate such responsibility is the federal design dilemma faced by Congress. Taking a new approach to this delegation and decentralization, The Federal Design Dilemma focuses on individual members of Congress. Not only are these legislators elected by constituents from their states, they also consider the outcomes that will result from state-level versus national executive branch implementation of policies. Here, Pamela J. Clouser McCann documents congressional intergovernmental delegation between 1973 and 2010, and how individual legislators voted on decentralization and centralization choices. Clouser McCann traces the path of the Affordable Care Act from legislative proposals in each chamber to its final enactment, focusing on how legislators wrestled with their own intergovernmental context and the federal design of health insurance reform in the face of political challenges.

    • Looks at the states as potential implementers to broaden understanding of how Congress delegates in a flexible federal context
    • Focuses on individual legislators' incentives, constraints and opportunities linking state representatives to Congress and strategic policymaking by national actors
    • Creates a novel dataset of national delegation designs in a nuanced examination of decentralization and centralization as congressional delegation choices
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'As scholars investigate the implications of such trends for the politics of federalism, Clouser McCann’s book will likely remain a theoretical and empirical touchstone. With a combination of theoretical deftness and empirical precision, Clouser McCann shows that federalism is more than a constitutional terrain or a mere series of 'venues' in which political actors can seek to shift authority. Rather, federalism is fundamental to policy bargaining in Congress. As such, The Federal Design Dilemma warrants attention far beyond the community of federalism scholars. Indeed, it should be read by anyone with an interest in the politics of policy-making in the United States.' Philip Rocco, Publius: The Journal of Federalism

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2016
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107110465
    • length: 286 pages
    • dimensions: 238 x 160 x 25 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • contains: 38 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The federal design dilemma - a puzzle of intergovernmental delegation
    2. A theory of federal delegation design
    3. Measuring the federal allocation of authority
    4. Intergovernmental context and congressional coalition formation
    5. Congressional intergovernmental delegation of authority from 1973–2010
    6. Intergovernmental options and the politics of health insurance reform
    7. The intergovernmental context of federal policy design.

  • Author

    Pamela J. Clouser McCann, University of Southern California
    Pamela J. Clouser McCann is an assistant professor at the Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California.

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