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If people vote because they like to, then why do so many of them lie?

William Harbaugh ()

Public Economics from University Library of Munich, Germany

Abstract: Of those eligible, about 40% do not vote in presidential elections. When asked, about a quarter of those nonvoters will lie to the survey takers and claim that they did. Increases in education are associated with higher voting rates and lower rates of lying overall, but with increased rates of lying conditional on not voting. This paper proposes a model of voter turnout in which people who claim to vote get praise from other citizens. Those who lie must bear a cost of lying. The model has a stable equilibrium with positive rates of voting, honest non-voting, and lying. Reasonable parameter changes produce changes in these proportions in the same direction as the changes actually observed across education levels.

Keywords: Voting; lying; turnout; social norms (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 H41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 17 pages
Date: 1996-06-27
Note: Type of Document - Wordperfect; prepared on IBM PC ; pages: 17; figures: request from author
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Related works:
Journal Article: If People Vote Because They Like to, Then Why Do So Many of Them Lie? (1996)
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