Determinants of the Distribution of Congressional Earmarks Across States
AbstractCongressional earmarks have been the subject of significant political debate in recent years. Also known as “pork barrel spending,” earmarks are budgetary requests made by a single legislator that typically circumvent the traditional competitive bidding process designed to ensure the efficient use of public dollars. Utilizing annual state-level estimates of pork barrel spending, we briefly examine the factors influencing states’ receipt of earmarked funds from Congress. Results indicate that on average smaller states receive the largest amount of per capita earmarked funding, most likely as a result of their disproportionate influence in the Senate. In addition, the presence of a Republican Congressional delegation increases pork spending in the state. Finally, the tenure of a state’s senior Senator has a large effect on the state’s receipt of earmarked funds. Each additional year of Senate experience by a state’s senior Senator results in a $4.48 increase in earmarked dollars per capita for that state’s residents.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0806.
Length: 10 pages
Date of creation: May 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Economics Letters, Vol. 104:2, August 2009, 63-65.
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Web page: http://www.holycross.edu/departments/economics/website/
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pork barrel spending; pork; earmarks; government spending;
Other versions of this item:
- Boyle, Melissa A. & Matheson, Victor A., 2009. "Determinants of the distribution of congressional earmarks across states," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 63-65, August.
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General
- H61 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Budget; Budget Systems
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- Brian Knight, 2004. "Legislative Representation, Bargaining Power, and the Distribution of Federal Funds: Evidence from the U.S. Senate," NBER Working Papers 10385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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- Bernhardt, Dan & Dubey, Sangita & Hughson, Eric, 2004. "Term limits and pork barrel politics," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(12), pages 2383-2422, December.
- Robert Baumann & Bryan Engelhardt & Victor Matheson, 2009. "The Great Macroeconomic Experiment: Assessing the Effects of Fiscal Stimulus Spending on Employment Growth," Working Papers 0910, College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics.
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