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Is the 50-State Strategy Optimal?

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  • Dan Kovenock
  • Brian Roberson

Abstract

In 2005, the Democratic National Committee adopted the 50-state strategy in lieu of the strategy of focusing solely on battleground states. The rationale given for this move is that campaign expenditures are durable outlays that impact both current and future campaigns. This paper investigates the optimality of the 50-state strategy in a simple dynamic game of campaign resource allocation in which expenditures act as a form of investment. Neither the 50-state nor the battleground-states strategy is likely to arise in equilibrium. Instead, parties employ a modified battleground-states strategy in which they stochastically target non-battleground states.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Purdue University, Department of Economics in its series Purdue University Economics Working Papers with number 1211.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pur:prukra:1211

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Related research

Keywords: Political Campaigns; Dynamic Contests; Elections; All-Pay Auction; War of Attrition;

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References

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  1. repec:bla:restud:v:73:y:2006:i:2:p:505-529 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Kai A. Konrad & Dan Kovenock, 2005. "Equilibrium and Efficiency in the Tug-of-War," CESifo Working Paper Series 1564, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Brian Roberson, 2006. "The Colonel Blotto game," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 1-24, September.
  4. Lien, Da-Hsiang Donald, 1990. "Corruption and allocation efficiency," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 153-164, July.
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  6. Kvasov, Dmitriy, 2007. "Contests with limited resources," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 136(1), pages 738-748, September.
  7. Marinelli, Carlo, 2007. "The stochastic goodwill problem," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 176(1), pages 389-404, January.
  8. Kovenock, Dan & Robertson, Brian, 2005. "Electoral Poaching and Party Identification," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1178, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
  9. Alex Robson, 2005. "Multi-Item Contests," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2005-446, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
  10. Klumpp, Tilman & Polborn, Mattias K., 2006. "Primaries and the New Hampshire Effect," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 1073-1114, August.
  11. Clark, Derek J. & Riis, Christian, 2000. "Allocation efficiency in a competitive bribery game," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 109-124, May.
  12. Baye, M. & Kovenock, D. & Vries, C. de, 1990. "The All-Pay Auction with Complete Information," Discussion Paper 1990-51, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  13. Nicolas Sahuguet & Nicola Persico, 2006. "Campaign spending regulation in a model of redistributive politics," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 95-124, 05.
  14. Mattias Polborn, 2006. "Investment under Uncertainty in Dynamic Conflicts," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(2), pages 505-529.
  15. Konrad, Kai A & Kovenock, Dan, 2006. "Multi-Battle Contests," CEPR Discussion Papers 5645, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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Cited by:
  1. Aner Sela & Reut Megidish, 2012. "Sequential Contests With Synergy And Budget Constraints," Working Papers 1212, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Department of Economics.
  2. Megidish, Reut & Sela, Aner, 2011. "Sequential Contests with Synergy and Budget Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 8383, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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