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Reverse Political Coattails under a Technocratic Government: New Evidence on the National Electoral Benefits of Local Party Incumbency

Alexandru Savu

Cambridge Working Papers in Economics from Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge

Abstract: Does the control of local offices benefit parties in national elections when local incumbents are not strategically supported by the central government? To address this question, I study the national electoral effects of local party incumbency in the context of a technocratic central government instituted following an unexpected tragic event that forced the resignation of the previous government. Using a regression discontinuity method applied to mayoral races in Romania, I document that the control of local offices causally generated significant vote share premia in the 2016 parliamentary ballot - estimated at 10-11 percentage points, or roughly one fourth of the dependent variable’s mean. My results show that the affiliation of local incumbents can be consequential for parliamentary power absent a contemporaneous party alignment linking local and central governmental forces.

Keywords: Central and Local Governments; Reverse Coattails; Local Incumbency; Clientelism; Political Parties; Elections (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 D73 H50 H72 H77 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021-01-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-pol and nep-tra
Note: ams269
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