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Voting when the stakes are high

Jørgen Andersen (), Jon Fiva () and Gisle Natvik

Journal of Public Economics, 2014, vol. 110, issue C, 157-166

Abstract: Most theories of voter behavior predict that electoral participation will be higher in elections where more is at stake. We test this prediction by studying how participation is affected by exogenous variation in local governments' financial flexibility to provide pork for their voters. Utilizing simultaneous elections for different offices, we identify a positive effect of election stakes on participation: Higher stakes at the local level increase participation at the local relative to the regional election. Survey evidence indicates that the underlying mechanism relates to citizens' acquisition of information.

Keywords: Voter motivation; Electoral participation; Roll-off; Pork barrel spending (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 D83 H71 H72 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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Working Paper: Voting When the Stakes Are High (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Voting when the stakes are high (2010) Downloads
Working Paper: Voting when the Stakes are High (2010) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2013.10.003

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