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Strategic Campaigns and Redistributive Politics

  • Christian Schultz

The article investigates strategic, informative campaigning by two parties when politics concern redistribution. Voters are uncertain about whether parties favour special groups. Parties will target campaigns on groups where most votes are gained by informing about policies. In equilibrium, campaigning will be most intensive in groups where the uncertainty is largest and where voters are most mobile, most likely to vote, most receptive to campaigns and relatively uninformed initially. These groups will become more informed about policy. Parties will therefore gain more votes by treating these groups well so these groups will gain from strategic campaigning. Welfare effects are assessed. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

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Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 117 (2007)
Issue (Month): 522 (07)
Pages: 936-963

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:522:p:936-963
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  1. Grossman, Gene M & Shapiro, Carl, 1984. "Informative Advertising with Differentiated Products," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 63-81, January.
  2. Stephen Coate, 2004. "Political Competition with Campaign Contributions and Informative Advertising," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(5), pages 772-804, 09.
  3. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2000. "The political economy of government responsiveness: theory and evidence from India," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 2308, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  4. Assar Lindbeck & Jörgen Weibull, 1987. "Balanced-budget redistribution as the outcome of political competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 273-297, January.
  5. Potters, Jan & Sloof, Randolph & van Winden, Frans, 1997. "Campaign expenditures, contributions and direct endorsements: The strategic use of information and money to influence voter behavior," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-31, February.
  6. Ignacio Ortuno-Ortin & Christian Schultz, 2005. "Public Funding of Political Parties," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 7(5), pages 781-791, December.
  7. Schultz, Christian, 2002. "Policy biases with voters' uncertainty about the economy and the government," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 487-506, March.
  8. Dahlberg, M. & Johansson, E., 1999. "On the Vote Purchasing Behavior of Incumbent Governments," Papers 1999:24, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  9. Dixit, Avinash K & Londregan, John, 1994. "The Determinants of Success of Special Interests in Redistributive Politics," CEPR Discussion Papers 1054, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. repec:dgr:kubcen:199727 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Butters, Gerard R, 1977. "Equilibrium Distributions of Sales and Advertising Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 465-91, October.
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