Master of Arts (MA)
First Committee Member
Number of Pages
This thesis seeks to improve our understanding of the relationship between state legislative professionalism and direct democracy. Using institutionalist theory as a framework, I employ negative binomial regression to measure frequency changes in statewide ballot initiatives (1990-2000) as a function of state legislative professionalism. I find that increased professionalism is associated with higher levels of ballot initiatives appearing on statewide ballots, after controlling for qualification difficulty, interest group strength, divided government, and demographic variables. While the conclusions may not provide insight as to the long-term (or short-term, for that matter) quality of the initiatives or referenda, they do provide insight as to when the citizenry is more likely to eschew one fundamental component of American government---representative democracy---in favor of what has quickly become another important component of American government---direct democracy.
Democracy; Direct; Legislatures; Matter; Professionalism; State
Political science; Public administration
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
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Mirjanian, Donald D, "Direct democracy and state legislatures: Does professionalism matter?" (2008). UNLV Retrospective Theses & Dissertations. 2310.