Effects of changes in congressional committee/subcommittee structure on federal expenditures
Recker, Paul R.
Henderson, David R.
Mehay, Stephen L.
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This thesis examines the role of the legislative structure in explaining the growth of federal government spending. The legislative structure of Congress is defined in terms of the size, number, and partisanship of congressional committees and subcommittees. An econometric model is used to correlate and assess archival data from the years 1961 through 1984. Archival data is broken down by functional expenditure area (dependent variable), by committees and subcommittees which addressed specific functional areas, by the numbers of senators or representatives sitting on the respective committees and subcommittees, and by the averaged Democratic proportion of the membership on the committees and subcommittees in the corresponding functional area. The model estimates the effect of structural and other, non-structural, variables ( e. g. percentage change in unemployment and real national income) on the percentage change in functional expenditures over time. This thesis concludes that legislative structure plays a statistically insignificant role in explaining the growth of federal spending.
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