The Parties in Court

The Parties in Court : American Political Parties Under the Constitution

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Robert C. Wigton's The Parties in Court: American Political Parties under the Constitution provides a comprehensive overview of the legal status of American political parties through an analysis of the many court opinions, both state and federal, in American history that have dealt with parties. The book concludes with suggestions for resolving the persistent problem of placing American political parties within our democratic system of more

Product details

  • Hardback | 392 pages
  • 165.1 x 231.14 x 27.94mm | 566.99g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • 3 black & white illustrations, 3 tables
  • 0739189670
  • 9780739189672

About Robert C. Wigton

Robert C. Wigton is professor of political science at Eckerd College and an more

Review quote

Though not mentioned in the Constitution, political parties have evolved in the American setting to become crucial political actors without which modern representative democracy would be unworkable. Operating within the interstices produced by the constitutional divisions of public and private, federalism, separation of powers, and representation, American political parties maintain a quasi-public function and status that invites ongoing judicial intervention. Wigton explores the role of courts in defining the legal limits, obligations, and contours of political parties in the US. Wigton's account explores how courts have fashioned a broad but incomplete jurisprudence within each of the three interrelated areas that constitute political parties--the party organization, the electoral side of parties, and the party-in-government. Wigton explores court involvement in these areas from several political science paradigms, but his chief contribution is in describing how courts have balanced an irreducible number of competing values (such as the right to association, the integrity of the electoral process, and regime stability) in fashioning their jurisprudence. Wigton's scholarly emphasis is chiefly empirical, but he also proffers brief normative recommendations for courts based on his findings. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate, graduate, research, and professional collections. CHOICE Wigton does an excellent job documenting and critically analyzing the history of government regulation of political parties in the United States, with a particular focus on the role the courts have played in this process. A valuable text for all scholars of American political parties. -- Mark D. Brewer, University of Maineshow more

Table of contents

Chapter 1: American Political Parties, Government Regulation & Constitutional Law Chapter 2: The Judicial Regulation of the Internal Activities of Political Parties Chapter 3: The Regulation of Political Parties in the Electoral Process Chapter 4: The Regulation of Incumbent Political Parties Chapter 5: Summary and Recommendations Bibliography Cases Citedshow more