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Party Alternation, Divided Government, and Fiscal Performance within U.S. States

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Author Info

  • Peter Calcagno

    (Department of Economics, College of Charleston)

  • Monica Escaleras

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Florida Atlantic University)

Abstract

The literature on U.S. state government fiscal performance has examined the role of institutional factors such as budget rules and divided government, but has largely ignored the impact of party alternation. This paper primarily focuses on whether party alternation in the governor’s office affects fiscal performance. Our hypothesis is that frequent party changes create a political environment that impacts fiscal performance. To further assess the impact of party alternation on fiscal performance, we consider our primary hypothesis in conjunction with the degree of division that exists between the governor’s office and the legislature. Using panel data from 37 states between 1971 and 2000 we test the hypothesis that frequent party alternation can be expected to affect fiscal performance and find strong support for the hypothesis.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University in its series Working Papers with number 06006.

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Length: 18 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision: Dec 2006
Publication status: forthcoming in Economics of Governance
Handle: RePEc:fal:wpaper:06006

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Keywords: Fiscal performance; state government; party alternation;

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References

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  1. von Hagen, Jurgen, 1991. "A note on the empirical effectiveness of formal fiscal restraints," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 199-210, March.
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  4. Besley, Timothy & Case, Anne, 1995. "Does Electoral Accountability Affect Economic Policy Choices? Evidence from Gubernatorial Term Limits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 769-98, August.
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  8. Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Scholarly Articles 3612769, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Poterba, James M., 1995. "Capital budgets, borrowing rules, and state capital spending," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 165-187, February.
  10. Besley, Timothy J. & Case, Anne, 2002. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," CEPR Discussion Papers 3498, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Nouriel Roubini & Jeffrey Sachs, 1989. "Government Spending and Budget Deficits in the Industrial Economies," NBER Working Papers 2919, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Roubini, Nouriel & Sachs, Jeffrey D., 1989. "Political and economic determinants of budget deficits in the industrial democracies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 903-933, May.
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  14. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
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  17. repec:fth:coluec:754 is not listed on IDEAS
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Christian Bjørnskov & Niklas Potrafke, 2009. "Political ideology and economic freedom across Canadian provinces," Working Papers CEB 09-054.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  2. Potrafke, Niklas, 2009. "Political cycles and economic performance in OECD countries: empirical evidence from 1951-2006," MPRA Paper 23751, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Niklas Potrafke, 2011. "Does government ideology influence budget composition? Empirical evidence from OECD countries," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 101-134, June.
  4. Niklas Potrafke, 2010. "Ideology and cultural policy," TWI Research Paper Series 49, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universität Konstanz.

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