A Legalistic Heritage and a Democratic Ideology
A legalistic heritage and a democratic ideology have predisposed American political science to search outside the Washington community for explanations of behavior in that community—legalism looking to the Constitution as a determinative influence, and democratic ideology looking to public opinion and constituency ‘pressures’ as determinative influences upon the conduct of men in office….Political science has yet to confront squarely the proposition that the governing group in Washington…has an inner life of its own—a special culture which carries with it prescriptions and cues for behavior that may be far more explicit than those originating outside the group and no less consequential for the conduct of government.
James S. Young, The Washington Community, 1800-1828, quoted in
Donald R. Matthews and James Stimson, “Decision-Making by U.S. Representatives: A Preliminary Model.”