Cohesion in legislatures and the vote of confidence procedure

Daniel Diermeier*, Timothy J. Feddersen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

210 Scopus citations


We present a framework to analyze the ejects of constitutional features on legislative voting with respect to cohesion and the distribution of payoffs. We then apply this framework to parliamentary democracies and show how a prominent feature of decision making in parliaments, the vote of confidence procedure, creates an incentive for ruling coalitions to vote together on policy issues that might otherwise split them. The key feature that creates cohesive voting is the fact that votes on bills are treated as votes on who controls floor access in future periods. As a consequence, legislative majorities capture more of the legislative rents from the minority in parliamentary democracies than in nonparliamentary settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)611-621
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Political Science Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations

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