Bicameral Representation

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


In James Madison's Federalist 51, he justified the framer's stand on dividing the national legislature into two branches to disperse and check political power. Reflecting on this institutional choice, Richard F. Fenno, Jr. said that the division of the national legislature into two separate bodies had not been a much-debated issue in 1787 and has been taken for granted ever since. The case of bicameralism has been widely accepted in American politics so that up to date, the fifty state legislatures still have two chambers. In the U.S., bicameral institutions have been the most broadly and tacitly accepted of the political institutions. This article examines empirical and theoretical research on bicameral representation and suggests further avenues for investigation. After discussing theories of bicameralism, the article focuses on two topics. First, the policy and political implications of dividing the legislature into two chambers and second the constitutional features that make the two chambers different from each other.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of the American Congress
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191724862
ISBN (Print)9780199559947
StatePublished - May 2 2011
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Social Sciences


  • Bicameral institutions
  • Bicameral representation
  • Bicameralism
  • Constitutional features
  • Legislature
  • Policy implications
  • Political implications
  • Theories of bicameralism
  • Two chambers


Dive into the research topics of 'Bicameral Representation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this