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Legislative TermLimits and Government Spending: Theory and Evidence from the United States

Yasushi Asako (), Tetsuya MatsubayashiAuthor-Name-First: TetsuyaAuthor-Name-Last: MatsubayashiAuthor-Workplace-Name: Osaka School of International Public Policy, Osaka University () and Michiko Ueda ()
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Michiko Ueda: Department of Political Science, Syracuse University

Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Tetsuya Matsubayashi

No 1603, Working Papers from Waseda University, Faculty of Political Science and Economics

Abstract: What are the fiscal consequences of legislative term limits? To answer this question, we first develop a legislative bargaining model that describes negotiations over the allocation of distributive projects among legislators with different levels of seniority. Building on several predictions from the model, we develop two hypotheses for empirical testing. First, the adoption of term limits that results in a larger reduction in the variance of seniority within a legislature increases the amount of government spending. Second, legislatures that adopt stricter term limits increase the amount of government spending, while legislatures that adopt moderate term limits show no change in the amount. We provide evidence for these hypotheses using panel data for 49 US state legislatures between 1980 and 2010

Keywords: Legislature; seniority; term limits; government spending; elections (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C72 D72 H72 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 48 pages
Date: 2016-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-pol
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