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Tying Your Enemy’s Hands in Close Races: The Politics of Federal Transfers in Brazil

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  • Fernanda Brollo
  • Tommaso Nannicini

Abstract

This paper uses a quasi-experimental strategy to disclose utterly political reasons behind the allocation of intergovernmental transfers in a federal state. We apply a regression discontinuity design in close elections to identify the effect of political alignment on federal transfers to municipal governments in Brazil. We find that municipalities where the mayor is affiliated with the coalition of the Brazilian President receive larger (discretionary) infrastructure transfers by about 40% in preelection years. This effect is mainly driven by the fact that the federal government penalizes municipalities run by mayors from the opposition coalition who won by a narrow margin, thereby tying their hands for the next election.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 358.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:358

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  1. Alain de Janvry & Frederico Finan & Elisabeth Sadoulet, 2010. "Local Electoral Incentives and Decentralized Program Performance," NBER Working Papers 16635, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Zudenkova, Galina, 2010. "A Political Agency Model of Coattail Voting," MPRA Paper 28800, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/6ggbvnr6munghes9oaso1e0k4 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Thushyanthan Baskaran, 2013. "Do bailouts buy votes? Evidence from a panel of Hessian municipalities," Economics of Governance, Springer, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 257-278, August.
  4. Brollo, Fernanda & Troiano, Ugo, 2013. "What Happens When a Woman Wins an Election? Evidence from Close Races in Brazil," CAGE Online Working Paper Series, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE) 161, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  5. Baskaran, Thushyanthan, 2014. "The political economy of special needs transfers: Evidence from Bavarian municipalities, 1993-2011," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 211, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  6. Marta Curto-Grau (Universitat de Barcelona) & Albert Sole-Olle (Universitat de Barcelona) & Pilar Sorribas-Navarro(Universitat de Barcelona), 2012. "Partisan targeting of inter-governmental transfers & state interference in local elections: evidence from Spain," Working Papers in Economics 288, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  7. Matthias Dahm & Amihai Glazer, 2012. "How An Agenda Setter Induces Legislators to Adopt Policies They Oppose," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS, Condorcet Center for political Economy 2012-11-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.
  8. Matthias Dahm & Amihai Glazer, 2013. "A Carrot and Stick Approach to Agenda-Setting," Discussion Papers, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham 2013-10, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
  9. Oppedisano, Veruska, 2011. "The (adverse) effects of expanding higher education: Evidence from Italy," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 997-1008, October.
  10. Helmut Herwartz & Bernd Theilen, 2014. "On the political and fiscal determinants of income redistribution under federalism and democracy: evidence from Germany," Public Choice, Springer, Springer, vol. 159(1), pages 121-139, April.
  11. Zudenkova, Galina, 2011. "A Model of Party Discipline in a Congress," Working Papers 2072/151813, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Department of Economics.
  12. Bracco, Emanuele & Redoano, Michela & Porcelli, Francesco, 2012. "Incumbent Effects and Partisan Alignment in Local Elections: a Regression Discontinuity Analysis Using Italian Data," CAGE Online Working Paper Series, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE) 87, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  13. Ronny Freier, 2011. "Incumbency as the Major Advantage: The Electoral Advantage for Parties of Incumbent Mayors," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1147, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  14. Leandro De Magalhães, 2012. "Incumbency Effects in Brazilian Mayoral Elections:A Regression Discontinuity Design Abstract: I use a regression discontinuity design to study incumbency effects in Brazilian mayoral elections. For ma," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 12/284, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  15. Emilio Guterriez & Ruben Durante, 2013. "Fighting Crime with a Little Help from my Friends: Party Affiliation, Inter‐jurisdictional Cooperation and Crime in Mexico," Sciences Po publications 17, Sciences Po.

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