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Deep Pockets, Extreme Preferences: Interest Groups and Campaign Finance Contributions

Thomas Bassetti () and Filippo Pavesi

No 222, Working Papers from University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics

Abstract: In electoral competitions, interest groups will be willing to finance politicians that require funding for campaign advertising, in exchange for policy favors. Our model predicts that interest groups with more extreme preferences will devote more resources to campaign financing. This occurs because lobbies demand policy favors that are costly to candidates since they reduce voter consent. Extreme interest groups must therefore adequately reward politicians by providing higher contributions, so that candidates may recover popularity through campaign advertising. Our unique data set on U.S. House elections provides empirical evidence that is consistent with these findings.

Keywords: Campaign Finance; Interest Groups; Elections; Extreme Preferences (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 P16 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 36 pages
Date: 2012-04, Revised 2012-04
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-pol
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