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Protecting minorities through voting rules

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  • R. Renault
  • A. Trannoy

Abstract

With too much disparity in opinions, minorities may question the legitimacy of majority voting and indermine the unity of the group through political violence or civil disobedience. Properties of an average vvoting rule are investigated here, with particular attention to its ability to protect minorities. Voters typically misrepresent their tastes by taking extreme stands. Conditions ensuring that average voting favors a minority more than the majority voting are derived. They are used to show that in actual applications of average voting, crucial factors are the correlation between wealth and tastes and the progressiveness of taxes.

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Paper provided by THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise in its series THEMA Working Papers with number 99-04.

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Date of creation: 1999
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Handle: RePEc:ema:worpap:99-04

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  1. Bergstrom, Theodore & Blume, Lawrence & Varian, Hal, 1986. "On the private provision of public goods," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 25-49, February.
  2. Bergstrom, Ted C, 1979. " When Does Majority Rule Supply Public Goods Efficiently?," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 81(2), pages 216-26.
  3. Bagnoli, Mark & McKee, Michael, 1991. "Controlling the Game: Political Sponsors and Bureaus," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(2), pages 229-47, Fall.
  4. Warr, Peter G., 1983. "The private provision of a public good is independent of the distribution of income," Economics Letters, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 207-211.
  5. Grossman, Gene M. & Helpman, Elhanan, 1996. "Electoral Competition with Policy Compromise," Economics Series, Institute for Advanced Studies 31, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  6. Ignacio Ortuno-Ortin & Anke Gerber, 1998. "Political compromise and endogenous formation of coalitions," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 445-454.
  7. Bolton, Patrick & Roland, Gérard, 1995. "The Break up of Nations: A Political Economy Analysis," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 1225, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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