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Interest Groups and Get Out the Vote Drives


  • Cadigan John

    () (American University)


This article analyzes voter mobilization and interest group activity within a citizen-candidate model. Interest groups influence the decisions of 'high cost’ voters by running a 'get out the vote’ campaign. Membership fees paid by citizens joining an interest group finance the vote drives. Because citizens choose whether to join an interest group, size is an endogenous feature of equilibrium outcomes. In contrast to the existing literature, it is shown that smaller groups may have greater influence. Importantly, this result does not depend on the ability of smaller groups to overcome the free rider problem. Intuitively, because smaller groups may have a less diverse membership, they can advocate more extreme policy outcomes. An interest group’s influence is shown to depend on voting costs and the separation between candidate positions. The presence of multiple interest groups mitigates an interest’s influence, resulting in inefficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Cadigan John, 2004. "Interest Groups and Get Out the Vote Drives," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-28, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejeap:v:topics.4:y:2004:i:1:n:31

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Katkar Rama & Reiley David H, 2007. "Public versus Secret Reserve Prices in eBay Auctions: Results from a Pokémon Field Experiment," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 5(2), pages 1-25, January.
    2. Doug Bryan & David Lucking-Reiley & Naghi Prasad & Daniel Reeves, 2000. "Pennies from eBay: The Determinants of Price in Online Auctions," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0003, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
    3. Rama Katkar & David Lucking-Reiley, 2000. "Public Versus Secret Reserve Prices in eBay Auctions: Results of Pok�mon Field Experiment," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0026, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
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