AUTHORS' NOTE: The authors would like to thank the staff of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, especially William McNitt, for their research assistance. In addition, we would like to thank Nathan Dietz, Samuel Hoff, John Kessel, David Kimball, Roger Larocca, Tim Johnson, Karen Hult, Charles Walcott, and Terry Sullivan for helpful comments. This research has been funded in part by the Research Enhancement Program at the University of Texas at Arlington and by the Gerald R. Ford Foundation Travel Grant.
Veto Threats as a Policy Tool: When to Threaten?
Article first published online: 21 APR 2004
Presidential Studies Quarterly
Volume 32, Issue 1, pages 30–45, March 2002
How to Cite
Deen, R. E. and Arnold, L. W. (2002), Veto Threats as a Policy Tool: When to Threaten?. Presidential Studies Quarterly, 32: 30–45. doi: 10.1111/j.0360-4918.2002.00203.x
- Issue published online: 21 APR 2004
- Article first published online: 21 APR 2004
- Cited By
One of the most powerful tools of the president in the policy-making process is the veto. Although presidents can veto legislation at will, the use of the veto is costly as it can be perceived as a sign of weakness. Veto threats may provide the president with a bargaining tool that relies on the power of the veto without incurring its costs. This article explores the conditions under which presidents are likely to use veto threats. The authors posit a model of presidents' use of veto threats that includes presidential resources and environmental, bargaining, and policy-related factors. Ideas are tested on the Ford administration. It is found that the likelihood of a presidential veto threat is affected primarily by the salience of the issue and the characteristics of the bargaining process.