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An empirical analysis of valence in electoral competition

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  • Fabian Gouret

    ()

  • Guillaume Hollard

    ()

  • Stéphane Rossignol

    ()

Abstract

Spatial models of voting have dominated mathematical political theory since the seminal work of Downs. The Downsian model assumes that each elector votes on the basis of his utility function which depends only on the distance between his preferred policy platform and the ones proposed by candidates. A succession of papers introduces valence issues into the model, i.e. candidates' characteristics which are independent of the platforms they propose. So far, little is known about which of the existing utility functions used in valence models is the most empirically founded. Using a large survey run prior to the 2007 French presidential election, we evaluate and compare several spatial voting models with valence. Existing models perform poorly in ¯tting the data. However, strong empirical regularities emerge. This leads us to a new model of valence that we call the partisan valence model. This new model makes sense theoretically and is sound empirically

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Social Choice and Welfare.

Volume (Year): 37 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (July)
Pages: 309-340

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Handle: RePEc:spr:sochwe:v:37:y:2011:i:2:p:309-340

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  1. Breusch, T.S. & Pagan, A.R., . "The Lagrange multiplier test and its applications to model specification in econometrics," CORE Discussion Papers RP -412, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Nicolas Sahuguet & Nicola Persico, 2006. "Campaign spending regulation in a model of redistributive politics," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 95-124, 05.
  3. Guillaume Hollard & Stéphane Rossignol, 2008. "An alternative approach of valence advantage in spatial competition," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00267218, HAL.
  4. Lorenzo Cappellari & Stephen P. Jenkins, 2006. "Calculation of multivariate normal probabilities by simulation, with applications to maximum simulated likelihood estimation," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, StataCorp LP, vol. 6(2), pages 156-189, June.
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  6. Carrillo, Juan D & Castanheira, Micael, 2002. "Platform Divergence, Political Efficiency and the Median Voter Theorem," CEPR Discussion Papers 3180, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Helios Herrera & David K. Levine & Cesar Martinelli, 2005. "Policy Platforms, Campaign Spending and Voter Participation," Working Papers, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM 0503, Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM.
  8. Micael Castanheira De Moura & Juan Carrillo, 2008. "Information and strategic political polarization," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/10003, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  9. Martin J. Osborne, 1995. "Spatial Models of Political Competition under Plurality Rule: A Survey of Some Explanations of the Number of Candidates and the Positions They Take," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(2), pages 261-301, May.
  10. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
  11. Ansolabehere, Stephen & Snyder, James M, Jr, 2000. " Valence Politics and Equilibrium in Spatial Election Models," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 103(3-4), pages 327-36, June.
  12. Dix, Manfred & Santore, Rudy, 2002. "Candidate ability and platform choice," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 189-194, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Motz, Nicolas, 2012. "Who emerges from smoke-filled rooms? Political parties and candidate selection," MPRA Paper 42678, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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