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Tax Contracts and Government Formation

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  • Gersbach, Hans
  • Schneider, Maik

Abstract

We introduce tax contracts and examine how they affect government formation and welfare of voters in a democracy with proportional elections. A tax contract specifies a range of tax rates a party is committed to if in government. We develop a new model of party competition in which parties choose tax rates, public-good provision, and perks, and we show that the introduction of tax contracts has two effects: a perks effect and a policy-shift effect. The former plays a central role in societies with a low degree of political polarization, where it tends to reduce politicians' perks. If a society is highly polarized, tax contracts can yield more moderate political outcomes. However, there are also circumstances in which tax contracts induce more extreme policies.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7084.

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Date of creation: Dec 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7084

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Related research

Keywords: contract theory; government formation; voting;

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References

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  1. Arianna Degan & Antonio Merlo, 2007. "Do Voters Vote Sincerely?," NBER Working Papers 12922, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Agnès Bénassy-Quéré & Nicolas Gobalraja & Alain Trannoy, 2007. "Tax and public input competition," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 22, pages 385-430, 04.
  3. Roberto Perotti & Massimo V. Rostagno & Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 2001. "Electoral System and Public Spending," IMF Working Papers 01/22, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  5. Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay & Kalyan Chatterjee, 2006. "Coalition Theory and its Applications: A Survey," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(509), pages F136-F155, 02.
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Cited by:
  1. Hans Gersbach & Maik T. Schneider, 2009. "Tax Contracts and Elections," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 09/123, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  2. Gersbach, Hans & Schneider, Maik T., 2012. "Tax contracts, party bargaining, and government formation," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 173-192.

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