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Voters elect politicians who closely matched their preferences

Author

Listed:
  • David Stadelmann

    () (University of Bayreuth and CREMA)

  • Marco Portmann

    () (University of Fribourg)

  • Reiner Eichenberger

    () (University of Fribourg and CREMA)

Abstract

What determines political candidates' election prospects? We match roll call votes of candidates for the majority elected upper house of parliament who were previously in the lower house with the preferences of their constituency as revealed in referenda. Thereby, we obtain a unique and direct measure of past congruence. Politicians who better represented the preferences of their constituency in the past exhibit a significantly and considerably higher probability of election. This provides first evidence for the direct retrospective voting rule, i.e. that voters elect politicians who represented their preferences well.

Suggested Citation

  • David Stadelmann & Marco Portmann & Reiner Eichenberger, 2013. "Voters elect politicians who closely matched their preferences," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(2), pages 1001-1009.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-12-00588
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    File URL: http://www.accessecon.com/Pubs/EB/2013/Volume33/EB-13-V33-I2-P96.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Nannestad, Peter & Paldam, Martin, 1994. "The VP-Function: A Survey of the Literature on Vote and Popularity Functions after 25 Years," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 79(3-4), pages 213-245, June.
    2. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 2002. "Political Economics: Explaining Economic Policy," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262661314, August.
    3. Frey, Bruno S, 1994. "Direct Democracy: Politico-economic Lessons from Swiss Experience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 338-342, May.
    4. Thomas Braendle & Alois Stutzer, 2010. "Public servants in parliament: theory and evidence on its determinants in Germany," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 145(1), pages 223-252, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bernd Hayo & Florian Neumeier, 2017. "Public Attitudes toward Fiscal Consolidation: Evidence from a Representative German Population Survey," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(1), pages 42-69, February.
    2. Stadelmann, David & Portmann, Marco & Eichenberger, Reiner, 2014. "Full Transparency of Politicians' Actions Does Not Increase the Quality of Political Representation," Journal of Experimental Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(1), pages 16-23, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Retrospective Voting; Voting Behavior; Representation; Constituents' Preferences;

    JEL classification:

    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations

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