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The Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization Advance Access





Published: Wed, 10 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Thu, 11 Jan 2018 00:55:44 GMT

 



Amendment Politics and Agenda Setting: A Theory with Evidence from the US House of Representatives1

Wed, 10 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
Much recent work on legislative policy making has focused on the implications of agenda power. Yet, a critical step of the legislative process—floor amendments—has been almost entirely ignored in the most prominent theories of legislative decision making. In this paper, we fill this gap by developing a theoretical treatment of agenda setting at the amendment stage. Specifically, our theoretical approach defines the relationship between agenda setting at the amendment stage and outcomes at final passage. We test several implications using data from the US House of Representatives, and show that amendments do mitigate some of the majority party’s agenda setting advantage by moderating initial proposals away from the majority party position. However, amendments do not systematically undermine the majority party’s negative agenda control, as we find that amendment rolls do not increase the incidence of final passage rolls for the majority party.



Choice of Enterprise Form: Spain, 1886–1936

Fri, 05 Jan 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
Every new firm selects a legal form. Organizing as a corporation, a limited company, or a partnership shapes the firm’s access to capital markets, its governance arrangements and tax liabilities, and its treatment in bankruptcy. We use multinomial choice models to estimate the determinants of enterprise form using firm-level data on Spain for the period 1886–1936. Our results support hypotheses drawn from the corporate-finance and ownership literatures; entrepreneurs preferred the corporation for the largest firms and for firms vulnerable to holdup. In 1919, Spain introduced a new legal form, a limited company combining attributes of the corporation and the partnership. This Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada (SRL) displaced both corporations and partnerships, and was especially popular for small and medium-sized firms whose owners were unrelated. Counterfactual calculations suggest that few enterprises created prior to 1919 would have chosen the SRL even if it had been available.