The Journal of Politics
DOI of Published Version
Legislatures employ a variety of organizational schemes to determine how positions of power are distributed within them. I propose and test a theory relating the internal organization of a legislature to the political career goals of its members. Examining the lower legislative house in California, Connecticut, and New York, I demonstrate that each body offers its members a different political career path, and that the particular ambition is promoted by the internal organization of the legislature. New York assemblymen have career ambitions and seniority matters in gaining positions of power in that body. California assemblymen have progressive goals and operate in a system which allows any member to gain power quickly. In Connecticut, where legislators have discrete ambitions, seniority is not important and power is centralized.
Journal Article Version
Version of Record
Published Article/Book Citation
The Journal of Politics, 50:3 (1988) pp. 726-744. https://doi.org/10.2307/2131465
Copyright © 1988 Southern Political Science Association. Used by permission. http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=JOP