AbstractWe present a theory of the choice of alternative democratic constitutions, a majoritarian or a consensual one, in an unequal society. We show that a consensual system turns out to be preferred by society when "ex ante" income inequality is relatively low, while a majoritarian system is chosen when income inequality is relatively high. We also find that consensual democracies should be expected to be ruled more often by centre-left coalitions while the right should have an advantage in majoritarian constitutions. The implications for the relationship between inequality and redistribution are discussed. Historical evidence and a cross-sectional analysis support our results. Copyright � The Author(s). Journal compilation � Royal Economic Society 2009.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.
Volume (Year): 120 (2010)
Issue (Month): 543 (03)
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Other versions of this item:
- Davide Ticchi & Andrea Vindigni, 2002. "Endogenous constitutions," Economics Working Papers 896, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Sep 2005.
- Ticchi, Davide & Vindigni, Andrea, 2003. "Endogenous Constitutions," Seminar Papers 726, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
- D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
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