Acclimation Effects and the Chief Justice: The Influence of Tenure and Role on the Decisional Behavior of the Court's Leader, 1888-2007
Abbreviated Journal Title
Am. Polit. Res.
U.S Supreme Court; judicial behavior; chief justice; acclimation effect; court appointees; associate justices; STATES-SUPREME-COURT; MAJORITY OPINION ASSIGNMENT; FRACTIONAL-INTEGRATION METHODS; PERSONAL ATTRIBUTE MODELS; CONSENSUAL; NORMS; REHNQUIST COURT; LONG MEMORY; TIME-SERIES; POLITICAL-SCIENCE; STRATEGIC CHOICE; Political Science
Under the acclimation effect view, recent appointees to the Court modify their behavior in systematic ways early in their tenure as opposed to their later decisional tendencies. Similarly, many studies have examined the chief justice's unique behavior. his study blends these two rich strands and explores whether chief justices demonstrate an acclimation effect, such that their behavior changes systematically through time. Using more than a century of Court data, this study examines whether new chief justices' concurrence and dissent rates decline and whether they write fewer individual opinions gradually. I find that the chief justice's position serves to create an incentive structure that is uniquely associated with declining rates of specially concurring and dissenting votes in certain cases. Also, new chief justices pen fewer special concurrences and dissents in some policy areas. My results hence imply that the chief justice experiences unique acclimation effects in learning to marshal the Court.
American Politics Research
"Acclimation Effects and the Chief Justice: The Influence of Tenure and Role on the Decisional Behavior of the Court's Leader, 1888-2007" (2011). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 1522.