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Overcoming Ideological Bias in Elections

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  • Vijay Krishna
  • John Morgan

Abstract

We study a model in which voters choose between two candidates on the basis of both ideology and competence. While the ideology of the candidates is commonly known, voters are imperfectly informed about competence. Voter preferences, however, are such that ideology alone determines voting. When voting is compulsory, the candidate of the majority ideology prevails, and this may not be optimal from a social perspective. However, when voting is voluntary and costly, we show that turnout adjusts endogenously so that the outcome of a large election is always first-best.

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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/10.1086/660731
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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/660731
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 119 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 183 - 211

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:doi:10.1086/660731

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Cited by:
  1. Fernanda L L de Leon, 2013. "Adding Ideology to the Equation: New Predictions for Election Results under Compulsory Voting," University of East Anglia Applied and Financial Economics Working Paper Series 044, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
  2. Martin Gregor, 2013. "The Optimal Ballot Structure for Double-Member Districts," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp493, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  3. Laurent Bouton & Micael Castanheira De Moura & A. Llorente-Saguer, 2012. "Divided Majority and Information Aggregation: Theory and Experiment," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/136800, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  4. Federico Revelli, 2013. "Tax limits and local democracy," Working Papers 2013/29, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  5. Gratton, Gabriele, 2014. "Pandering and electoral competition," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 163-179.
  6. Matías Núñez, 2014. "The strategic sincerity of Approval voting," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 56(1), pages 157-189, May.
  7. Gabriele Gratton, 2013. "Pandering, Faith and Electoral Competition," Discussion Papers 2012-22A, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
  8. Triossi, Matteo, 2013. "Costly information acquisition. Is it better to toss a coin?," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 169-191.
  9. Gianmarco León, 2013. "Turnout, political preferences and information: Experimental evidence from Perú," Economics Working Papers 1364, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  10. Roland Hodler & Simon Luechinger & Alois Stutzer, 2012. "The Effects of Voting Costs on the Democratic Process and Public Finances," Working papers 2012/02, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.

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