Economics at your fingertips  

Extreme idealism and equilibrium in the Hotelling–Downs model of political competition

David Ronayne

Public Choice, 2018, vol. 176, issue 3, No 3, 389-403

Abstract: Abstract In the classic Hotelling–Downs model of political competition, no pure strategy equilibrium with three or more strategic candidates exists when the distribution of voters’ preferred policies is unimodal. I study the effect of introducing two idealist candidates to the model who are non-strategic (i.e., fixed to their policy platforms), while allowing for an unlimited number of strategic candidates. Doing so, I show that equilibrium is restored for a non-degenerate set of unimodal distributions. In addition, the equilibria have the following features: (1) the left-most and right-most candidates (i.e., extremists) are idealists; (2) strategic candidates never share their policy platforms, which instead are spread out across the policy space; and (3) if more than one strategic candidate enters, the distribution of voter preferences must be asymmetric. I also show that equilibria can accommodate idealist fringes of candidates toward the extremes of the political spectrum.

Keywords: Hotelling–Downs; Political competition; Equilibrium existence; Idealism (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C72 D72 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) Abstract (text/html)
Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

Related works:
Working Paper: Extreme Idealism and Equilibrium in the Hotelling-Downs Model of Political Competition (2016) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
http://www.springer. ... ce/journal/11127/PS2

DOI: 10.1007/s11127-018-0556-y

Access Statistics for this article

Public Choice is currently edited by WIlliam F. Shughart II

More articles in Public Choice from Springer
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Sonal Shukla () and Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing ().

Page updated 2023-03-16
Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:176:y:2018:i:3:d:10.1007_s11127-018-0556-y