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Does partisan affiliation impact the distribution of spending? Evidence from state governments’ expenditures on education

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  • Hill, Andrew J.
  • Jones, Daniel B.

Abstract

How and why does partisan affiliation impact policy? Using a regression discontinuity strategy and focusing on state education spending, we find that Democratic and Republican governors allocate spending differently. In particular, school districts with higher shares of minority students receive larger state transfers than other districts under Democratic governors. A similar pattern occurs in state transfers to higher education institutions. This is true regardless of whether the governor is eligible for reelection; we find no evidence that Democrat governors are simply sending money to areas with a larger share of Democrats. These results suggest that the observed policy divergence is driven by differences in preferences of elected candidates.

Suggested Citation

  • Hill, Andrew J. & Jones, Daniel B., 2017. "Does partisan affiliation impact the distribution of spending? Evidence from state governments’ expenditures on education," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 143(C), pages 58-77.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:143:y:2017:i:c:p:58-77
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2017.09.008
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    1. repec:kap:pubcho:v:174:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11127-017-0491-3 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political economy; Partisan affiliation; Education finance;

    JEL classification:

    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • H75 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Government: Health, Education, and Welfare
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination

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