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Media as watchdogs: The role of news media in electoral competition

  • Chan, Jimmy
  • Suen, Wing

We develop an equilibrium model to analyze the role of the media in electoral competition. When policy payoffs are state-dependent, party policies do not converge to the median voter's ideal policy if the media report only party policies. News analysis about the state, though possibly biased, can discipline off-equilibrium deviations and make the parties adopt more centrist policies. Since voters are rational, the party favored by the media need not win with a higher probability. Instead, media bias may reduce the effectiveness of electoral competition and lead to more polarized policies.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 53 (2009)
Issue (Month): 7 (October)
Pages: 799-814

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:53:y:2009:i:7:p:799-814
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