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Informational Lobbying And Agenda Distortion

Arnaud Dellis () and Christopher Cotton ()

No 1348, Working Paper from Economics Department, Queen's University

Abstract: We challenge the prevailing view that pure informational lobbying (in the absence of political contributions and evidence distortion or withholding)leads to better informed policymaking. In the absence of lobbying, the policymaker may prioritize the more-important or ex ante more-promising issues. Recognizing this, interest groups involved with other issues can have an incentive to lobby, in order to change the issues that the policymaker learns about and prioritize. We identify two channels through which informational lobbying is detrimental,in the sense of leading to worse policy and possibly less-informed policy choices. First, it can cause the policymaker to give priority to less important issues with active lobbies, rather than the issues that are more-important to his constituents. Second, lobbying by interest groups on issues with ex ante less-promising reforms may crowd out informationcollection by the policymaker on issues with more-promising reforms. The analysis fully characterizes the set of detrimental lobbying equilibria under two alternative types of issue asymmetry.

Keywords: Lobbying; agenda setting; information collection; persuasion; information crowd out; political influence; interest groups (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 D78 D83 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 36 pages
Date: 2015-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ger and nep-mic
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (6) Track citations by RSS feed

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Journal Article: Informational Lobbying and Agenda Distortion (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Informational Lobbying and Agenda Distortion (2012) Downloads
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