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Economic Policy, Economic Performance, and Elections

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  • Harrington, Joseph E, Jr

Abstract

This paper explores the role of reelection pressures in determining economic policy. By assuming that voters are uncertai n as to the efficacy of different policies, a reelection process is derived that depends on both a politician's past policies and the level of economic activity during his time in office. It is shown th at the less uncertain are voters as to which policy is best, the more likely is a politician to manipulate policy for reelection purposes. Manipulation entails implementing the policy that is more likely to be well received rather than the one that maximizes income. Copyright 1993 by American Economic Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Harrington, Joseph E, Jr, 1993. "Economic Policy, Economic Performance, and Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 27-42, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:83:y:1993:i:1:p:27-42
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1994. "The Division of Labor, Coordination Costs, and Knowledge," NBER Chapters,in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 299-322 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Evenson, Robert E & Kislev, Yoav, 1976. "A Stochastic Model of Applied Research," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(2), pages 265-281, April.
    3. Adams, James D, 1990. "Fundamental Stocks of Knowledge and Productivity Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(4), pages 673-702, August.
    4. Kortum, Samuel, 1993. "Equilibrium R&D and the Patent-R&D Ratio: U.S. Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 450-457, May.
    5. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Feenstra, Robert C & Markusen, James R & Zeile, William, 1992. "Accounting for Growth with New Inputs: Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 415-421.
    7. Romer, Paul M, 1987. "Growth Based on Increasing Returns Due to Specialization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 56-62.
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