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So Diligent!

So Diligent!

True, not much activity here as of late, but we’ve been busy writing! Here are two recent papers on appointees:

Dull, Matthew and Patrick S. Roberts, 2009. “Continuity, Competence, and the Succession of Senate-Confirmed Agency Appointees, 1989-2009,” Presidential Studies Quarterly. 39:3 (September): 432-453.

Dull, Matthew M., Roberts, Patrick, Choi, Sang Ok and Keeney, Michael. 2009. “Appointee Confirmation and Tenure: Politics, Policy, and Professionalism in Federal Agency Leadership, 1989-2009”. APSA 2009 Toronto Meeting Paper. Available at SSRN:


In The Hill, our foray into public advocacy.

Op-ed: How Congress should repair the Vacancies Act
By Patrick Roberts and Matthew Dull

The Vacancies Act is a leaky, 19th-century vessel with a noble purpose: to quickly fill temporary agency leadership positions while maintaining the Senate’s advice and consent role over appointments. Over the past century, however, the act has run aground on an increasingly Byzantine assortment of agencies and presidential attempts at control. Today, the act is untenable. The executive and legislative branches interpret parts of the act differently, resulting in wild variations in compliance across agencies and appointments. Congress needs to plug the act’s holes in order to shore up the integrity of the appointment process by establishing a clear set of rules and transparency.

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