Politicians, Bureaucrats and Targeted Redistribution: The Role of Career Concerns
AbstractStronger career concerns induce appointed bureaucrats to adopt different policies than elected politicians. In particular, bureaucrats are less likely to use targeted redistribution to achieve personal political goals. I use the example of patronage jobs in local governments in the United States to provide empirical support for this claim. I show that the number of full-time public employees is signi?cantly higher in local governments with elected chief executives. This difference increases during election years. In addition, consistent with the notion that career concerns are especially strong for young bureaucrats, I ?nd that the number of full-time public employees increases with the age of appointed chief executives. There is no such relationship in the case of elected chief executives.
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