For each agreement, the guide also indicates a “Senate Treaty Document Number.” This number is assigned to any contract submitted to the Senate as part of the consultation and approval procedure. Executive agreements do not obtain the Senate Treaty Document Number. 2 It is therefore possible to identify the agreement contained in the database and the agreement concluded as an executive agreement. The use of executive contracts increased significantly after 1939. Before 1940, the U.S. Senate had ratified 800 treaties and presidents had concluded 1200 executive agreements; From 1940 to 1989, during World War II and the Cold War, presidents signed nearly 800 treaties, but negotiated more than 13,000 executive agreements. The results of the analysis are presented in this section. First of all, I consider the differences between treaties and executive agreements in general, without distinguishing between different types of executive agreements. I then examine whether the results change if we continue to distinguish between executive agreements, ex ante agreements between congressional and executive agreements, and ex post agreements between Congress and the executive. Table 1 contains summary statistics. As can be seen, 5% of all agreements were concluded in the form of a contract between 1982 and 2012, which makes the use of the treaty exceptional. 20% of agreements were cancelled at some point during the observation period.
The average agreement was valid for 15.26 years. Among the agreements that are no longer in force, the average shelf life is 7.3 years. LpPC values range from −17 to 17, with an average of −0.10. On average, 50 percent of Senate seats at the time the deal was signed were held by the president`s party. For 71 percent of the agreements, the government was divided, with the White House held by one party, either the Senate, the House of Representatives, or both. Taken together, these figures indicate that the average agreement could not have been adopted in the form of a treaty without the support of all parties, making the treaty a potentially costly instrument. . . .