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Political cycles in public expenditure: butter vs guns

Vincenzo Bove, Georgios Efthyvoulou () and Antonio Navas ()

Journal of Comparative Economics, 2017, vol. 45, issue 3, 582-604

Abstract: This paper explores, theoretically and empirically, how governments may use the tradeoff between social and military expenditure to advance their electoral and partisan objectives. Three key results emerge. First, governments tend to bias outlays towards social expenditure and away from military expenditure at election times. Second, the size of this tradeoff is larger when we exclude countries involved in conflict, where national security plays an important role on voter choice. Third, while certain categories of social expenditure are higher during left administrations, military expenditure is higher during right administrations.

Keywords: Elections; Partisanship; Social expenditure; Military expenditure (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 H11 H53 H56 P16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Working Paper: Political Cycles in Public Expenditure: Butter vs Guns (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Political Cycles in Public Expenditure: Butter vs Guns (2013) Downloads
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