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Religiosity and State Welfare

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  • Angela K. Dills
  • Rey Hernández-Julián

Abstract

The Catholic sex abuse scandals reduced both membership and religiosity in the Catholic Church. Because government spending on welfare may substitute for the religious provision of social services, we consider whether this plausibly exogenous decline in religiosity affected several measures of the public taste towards government spending on welfare between 1990 and 2008. In places where there were more scandals, individuals state a preference for less government provision of social services. In contrast, a higher level of abuse is also associated with an increase in voting for Democratic candidates for President and state legislatures, and an increase in per capita government welfare spending, although this increase is insufficient to replace the decrease in Catholic-provided charity.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19169.

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Date of creation: Jun 2013
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Publication status: Forthcoming: Religiosity and State Welfare , Angela Dills, Rey Hernández-Julián. in Economics of Religion and Culture , Hungerman. 2014
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19169

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  1. Scheve, Kenneth & Stasavage, David, 2006. "Religion and Preferences for Social Insurance," International Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 1(3), pages 255-286, July.
  2. Raquel Fernández & Gilat Levy, 2005. "Diversity and Redistribution," NBER Working Papers 11570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Gruber, Jonathan & Hungerman, Daniel M., 2007. "Faith-based charity and crowd-out during the great depression," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(5-6), pages 1043-1069, June.
  4. Huber, John D. & Stanig, Piero, 2011. "Church-state separation and redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7-8), pages 828-836, August.
  5. Erzo F.P. Luttmer, 1999. "Group Loyalty and the Taste for Redistribution," Working Papers 9902, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  6. F. C. Rodrigiuez, 1999. "Does Distributional Skewness Lead to Redistribution? Evidence from the United States," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(2), pages 171-199, 07.
  7. Becker, Elizabeth & Lindsay, Cotton M, 1994. "Does the Government Free Ride?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(1), pages 277-96, April.
  8. Angela K. Dills & Rey Hernández‐Julián, 2012. "Negative Publicity And Catholic Schools," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 50(1), pages 143-152, 01.
  9. Huber, John D. & Stanig, Piero, 2011. "Church-state separation and redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7), pages 828-836.
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