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The Political Economy of New Deal Fiscal Federalism

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  • Wallis, John Joseph
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    Abstract

    While the introduction of federal matching grants to finance the New Deal relief programs is usually viewed as a mechanism to insure federal control over state relief spending, a careful study of the New Deal reveals that the reverse was the case: matching grants allowed the states to escape close federal control. The standard economic model of intergovernmental grants reveals that the federal government will, if allowed, prefer to use discretionary rather than matching grants. With discretion, however, came power; power that neither the states nor Congress wished to see concentrated in the executive branch. Copyright 1991 by Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

    Volume (Year): 29 (1991)
    Issue (Month): 3 (July)
    Pages: 510-24

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:29:y:1991:i:3:p:510-24

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    Cited by:
    1. Lars Feld & Christoph Schaltegger, 2010. "Political stability and fiscal policy: time series evidence for the Swiss federal level since 1849," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(3), pages 505-534, September.
    2. Price Fishback & Samuel Allen & Jonathan Fox & Brendan Livingston, 2010. "A Patchwork Safety Net: A Survey Of Cliometric Studies Of Income Maintenance Programs In The United States In The First Half Of The Twentieth Century," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(5), pages 895-940, December.
    3. Wallis, John, 2001. "The Political Economy of New Deal Spending, Yet Again: A Reply to Fleck," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 305-314, April.
    4. Worthington, Andrew C & Dollery, Brian E, 1998. " The Political Determination of Intergovernmental Grants in Australia," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 94(3-4), pages 299-315, March.
    5. Paolo Liberati & Agnese Sacchi, 2013. "Tax decentralization and local government size," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(1), pages 183-205, October.
    6. Joshua L. Rosenbloom, 1999. "The Challenges of Economic Maturity: New England, 1880 - 1940," NBER Historical Working Papers 0113, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. John Joseph Wallis, 1996. "What Determines the Allocation of National Government Grants to the States?," NBER Historical Working Papers 0090, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. John Joseph Wallis, 2000. "American Government Finance in the Long Run: 1790 to 1990," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 61-82, Winter.
    9. Wallis, John Joseph, 1998. "The Political Economy of New Deal Spending Revisited, Again: With and without Nevada," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 140-170, April.
    10. John Joseph Wallis & Price Fishback & Shawn Kantor, 2005. "Politics, Relief, and Reform: The Transformation of America's Social Welfare System during the New Deal," NBER Working Papers 11080, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Mason, Joseph R., 2003. "The political economy of Reconstruction Finance Corporation assistance during the Great Depression," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 101-121, April.

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