Please don’t vote for me: strategic voting in a natural experiment with perverse incentives
AbstractWhether individuals vote strategically is one of the most important questions at the intersection of economics and political science. Exploiting a flaw in the German electoral system by which a party may gain seats by receiving fewer votes, this paper documents patterns of strategic voting in a large, real world election. During the 2005 elections to the Bundestag, the sudden death of a right-wing candidate necessitated a by-election in one electoral district. Knowing the results in all other districts and aware of the paradoxical incentives in place, a substantial fraction of the electorate reacted tactically and either voted for a party other than their most preferred one, or abstained. As a result, the Christian Democratic Union won an additional mandate, extending its narrow lead over the Social Democrats.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 38416.
Date of creation: Apr 2012
Date of revision:
voting; strategic voting; manipulation of elections;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-05-08 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2012-05-08 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-GTH-2012-05-08 (Game Theory)
- NEP-POL-2012-05-08 (Positive Political Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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- Coate, Stephen & Conlin, Michael & Moro, Andrea, 2008. "The performance of pivotal-voter models in small-scale elections: Evidence from Texas liquor referenda," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3-4), pages 582-596, April.
- Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
- Degan, Arianna & Merlo, Antonio, 2009. "Do voters vote ideologically?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(5), pages 1868-1894, September.
- Spenkuch, Jörg, 2013. "On the Extent of Strategic Voting," MPRA Paper 50198, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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