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Comparative Politics and Public Finance

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  • Torsten Persson
  • Gerard Roland
  • Guido Tabellini

Abstract

We present a model of electoral accountability to compare the public finance outcomes under a presidential-congressional and a parliamentary system. In a presidential-congressional system, contrary to a parliamentary system, there are no endogenous incentives for legislative cohesion, but this allows for a clearer separation of powers. These features lead to clear differences in the public finance performance of the two systems. A Parliamentary system has redistribution towards a majority, less underprovision of public goods, more waste and a higher burden of taxation, whereas a presidential-congressional system has redistribution towards a minority, more underprovision of public goods, but less waste and a smaller size of government.

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Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 114.

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Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:114

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  1. Chaim Fershtman & Kenneth L. Judd & Ehud Kalai, 1990. "Observable Contracts: Strategic Delegation and Cooperation," Discussion Papers 879, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Rosenthal, Howard, 1996. "A Theory of Divided Government," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1311-41, November.
  3. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
  4. Daniel Diermeier & Timothy J. Feddersen, 1996. "Disciplined Coalitions and Redistribution: The Effect of the Vote of Confidence Procedure on Legislative Bargaining," Discussion Papers 1171, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  5. Torsten Persson & Gerard Roland & Guido Tabellini, . "Separation of Powers and Political Accountability," Working Papers 100, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  6. V. V. Chari & Larry E. Jones & Ramon Marimon, 1997. "The economics of split-ticket voting in representative democracies," Working Papers 582, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Persson, Torsten, 1998. "Economic Policy and Special Interest Politics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(447), pages 310-27, March.
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