Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

A Theory of Political Entrenchment

Contents:

Author Info

  • Saint-Paul, Gilles
  • Ticchi, Davide
  • Vindigni, Andrea

Abstract

We develop a theory of endogenous political entrenchment in a simple two-party dynamic model of income redistribution with probabilistic voting. A partially self-interested left-wing party may implement (entrenchment) policies reducing the income of its own constituency, the lower class, in order to consolidate its future political power. Such policies increase the net gain that low-skill agents obtain from income redistribution, which only the Left (but not the Right) can credibly commit to provide, and therefore may help offsetting a potential future aggregate ideological shock averse to the left-wing party. We demonstrate that political entrenchment by the Left occurs only if incumbency rents are sufficiently high and that low-skill citizens may vote for this party even though they ratio-ally expect the adoption of these policies. We also discuss the case where the left-wing party may have the incentive to ex-ante commit to not pursue entrenchment policies once in power. Finally, we show that, in a more general framework, the entrenchment policies can be implemented also by the right-wing party. The comparative statics analyzes the effects of state capacity, a positive bias of voters for one party and income inequality on the incentives of the incumbent party to pursue entrenchment policies. The importance of our theory for constitutionally legislated term limits is also discussed. The theory sheds light on why left-wing parties or politicians often support liberal immigration policies of unskilled workers, are sometime in favor of free trade with less developed economies and of globalization more generally, or fail to reform plainly "dysfunctional" public educational systems damaging the lower classes.

(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://idei.fr/doc/wp/2012/theory.pdf
File Function: Full text
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Toulouse School of Economics (TSE) in its series TSE Working Papers with number 12-284.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 30 Mar 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tse:wpaper:25745

Contact details of provider:
Phone: (+33) 5 61 12 86 23
Web page: http://www.tse-fr.eu/
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords:

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
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.:
as in new window
  1. Alberto Alesina & Stephen E. Spear, 1987. "An Overlapping Generations Model of Electoral Competition," NBER Working Papers 2354, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Abdurrahman Aydemir & George J. Borjas, 2010. "Attenuation Bias in Measuring the Wage Impact of Immigration," NBER Working Papers 16229, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Tim Besley & Stephen Coate, . ""An Economic Model of Representative Democracy''," CARESS Working Papres, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences 95-02, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
  4. Daron Acemoglu & Davide Ticchi & Andrea Vindigni, 2009. "Persistence of Civil Wars," EIEF Working Papers Series 0910, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Sep 2009.
  5. Krusell, P. & Rios-Rull, J.V., 1993. "Vested Interests in a Positive Theory of Stagnation and Growth," Papers, Stockholm - International Economic Studies 547, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  6. Daron Acemoglu & Davide Ticchi & Andrea Vindigni, 2008. "A Theory of Military Dictatorships," Carlo Alberto Notebooks, Collegio Carlo Alberto 74, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  7. Acemoglu, D. & Ticchi, D. & Vindigni, A., 2006. "Emergence and Persistence of Inefficient States," Papers 12-02-2006, Princeton University, Research Program in Political Economy.
  8. Saint-Paul, G., 1993. "On the Political Economy of Labor Market Flexibility," DELTA Working Papers, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure) 93-02, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  9. Acemoglu, Daron & Golosov, Mikhail & Tsyvinski, Aleh, 2011. "Power fluctuations and political economy," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 146(3), pages 1009-1041, May.
  10. Gilles Saint-Paul, 2002. "The Political Economy of Employment Protection," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(3), pages 672-701, June.
  11. Harrington, Joseph E, Jr, 1993. "Economic Policy, Economic Performance, and Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 27-42, March.
  12. Abdul Ghafar Noury & Simon Hix, 2007. "Politics, not economic interests: determinants of migration policies in the European Union," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/7748, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  13. Anna Maria Mayda (Georgetown University), 2005. "Who Is Against Immigration? A Cross-Country Investigation of Individual Attitudes towards Immigrants," Working Papers, Georgetown University, Department of Economics gueconwpa~05-05-10, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  14. Romer, Thomas, 1975. "Individual welfare, majority voting, and the properties of a linear income tax," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 163-185, February.
  15. Weisbach, Michael S., 1988. "Outside directors and CEO turnover," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 431-460, January.
  16. Robert J. LaLonde & Robert H. Topel, 1991. "Labor Market Adjustments to Increased Immigration," NBER Chapters, in: Immigration, Trade and the Labor Market, pages 167-199 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Timothy Besley & Torsten Persson, 2009. "The Origins of State Capacity: Property Rights, Taxation, and Politics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1218-44, September.
  18. Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria & Spolaore, Enrico, 1994. "How cynical can an incumbent be? Strategic policy in a model of government spending," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 121-140, September.
  19. Alesina, Alberto, 1988. "Credibility and Policy Convergence in a Two-Party System with Rational Voters," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 796-805, September.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Leftist Tories?
    by chris dillow in Stumbling and Mumbling on 2013-02-18 14:23:46

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tse:wpaper:25745. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.