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Representative democracy and marginal rate progressive income taxation

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  • Carbonell-Nicolau, Oriol
  • Klor, Esteban F.

Abstract

This paper develops a political economy model that is consistent with the fact that democracies have a preference for increasing marginal tax rates on income. We present a model in which there is an exogenous set of political parties with preferences over the set of admissible tax schedules. This set contains virtually any increasing and piecewise linear continuous function. Each party decides whether or not to present a candidate for election. There is a fixed cost of running. The elected candidate implements one of her preferred tax policies. Our main results provide conditions under which a Strong Nash Equilibrium exists, and a tax schedule with increasing marginal tax rates is implemented in some Nash Equilibria and in any Strong Nash Equilibrium.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 87 (2003)
Issue (Month): 9-10 (September)
Pages: 2339-2366

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:87:y:2003:i:9-10:p:2339-2366

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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References

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  1. Thurow, Lester C, 1971. "The Income Distribution as a Pure Public Good," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 327-36, May.
  2. Dasgupta, Partha & Sen, Amartya & Starrett, David, 1973. "Notes on the measurement of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 180-187, April.
  3. Meltzer, Allan H & Richard, Scott F, 1981. "A Rational Theory of the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 914-27, October.
  4. Snyder, James M. & Kramer, Gerald H., 1988. "Fairness, self-interest, and the politics of the progressive income tax," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 197-230, July.
  5. John Roemer, 2003. "The Democratic Political Economy Of Progressive Income Taxation," Working Papers 9711, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  6. Le Breton, Michel & Moyes, Patrick & Trannoy, Alain, 1996. "Inequality Reducing Properties of Composite Taxation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 71-103, April.
  7. Gerald Kramer, 1983. "Is there a demand for progressivity?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 223-228, January.
  8. Roberts, Kevin W. S., 1977. "Voting over income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 329-340, December.
  9. Assar Lindbeck & Jörgen Weibull, 1987. "Balanced-budget redistribution as the outcome of political competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 273-297, January.
  10. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114, February.
  11. Martin J. Osborne & Al Slivinksi, 1995. "A Model of Political Competition with Citizen-Candidates," Department of Economics Working Papers 1995-01, McMaster University.
  12. Seade, J. K., 1977. "On the shape of optimal tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 203-235, April.
  13. Hamada, Koichi, 1973. "A simple majority rule on the distribution of income," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 243-264, June.
  14. Romer, Thomas, 1975. "Individual welfare, majority voting, and the properties of a linear income tax," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 163-185, February.
  15. Mitra, Tapan & Ok, Efe A. & Kockesen, Levent, 1998. "Popular support for progressive taxation and the relative income hypothesis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 69-76, January.
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Cited by:
  1. John Roemer, 2012. "The political economy of income taxation under asymmetric information: the two-type case," SERIEs, Spanish Economic Association, vol. 3(1), pages 181-199, March.
  2. Dhammika Dharmapala & Etienne Lehmann, 2003. "A Median Voter Theorem for Postelection Politics," Working papers 2003-47, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  3. Oriol Carbonell-Nicolau & Efe Ok, 2004. "Multidimensional income taxation and electoral competition: an equilibrium analysis," Departmental Working Papers 200407, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  4. Carbonell-Nicolau, Oriol & Ok, Efe A., 2007. "Voting over income taxation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 134(1), pages 249-286, May.
  5. Zsofia Barany, 2011. "Income inequality and the progressivity of taxes in a coalition formation model," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/eu4vqp9ompq, Sciences Po.
  6. Rafael Salas & Juan Gabriel Rodríguez, 2010. "Popular support for egalitarian social welfare," Working Papers 171, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  7. Rafael Salas & Juan Rodríguez, 2013. "Popular support for social evaluation functions," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 985-1014, April.
  8. Jenny De Freitas, 2009. "A Probabilistic Voting Model of Progressive Taxation with Incentive Effects," DEA Working Papers 34, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Departament d'Economía Aplicada.
  9. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/eu4vqp9ompqllr09i8hj22lpn is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Oriol Carbonell-Nicolau, 2007. "A Positive Theory of Income Taxation," Departmental Working Papers 200706, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.

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