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Candidate quality, pressure group endorsements and the nature of political advertising

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  • Wittman, Donald

Abstract

Candidates may vary in quality, where quality is some characteristic orthogonal to policy. This "simple modification" has for the most part defied integration into the Downsian framework. Here we add the following complicating factors. We consider the possibility that there are uninformed voters who are ignorant of the candidates' relative quality. However, a pressure group with inside information regarding the quality of the candidates may endorse one of the candidates as the high-quality candidate. We assume that the uninformed voters behave rationally in the presence of this endorsement. We show that campaign endorsements by the pressure group are generally welfare improving even though the pressure group takes advantage of its private information.
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  • Wittman, Donald, 2007. "Candidate quality, pressure group endorsements and the nature of political advertising," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 360-378, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:23:y:2007:i:2:p:360-378
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    Cited by:

    1. Hans Gersbach, 2014. "Campaigns, political mobility, and communication," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 161(1), pages 31-49, October.
    2. Donald Wittman, 2005. "Valence characteristics, costly policy and the median-crossing property: A diagrammatic exposition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 124(3), pages 365-382, September.
    3. Thomas Stratmann, 2005. "Some talk: Money in politics. A (partial) review of the literature," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 124(1), pages 135-156, July.
    4. Prato, Carlo & Wolton, Stephane, 2014. "The Voters' Curses: The Upsides and Downsides of Political Engagement," MPRA Paper 53482, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Simone Righi, 2015. "Campaign Spending and Rents in a Probabilistic Voting Model," Department of Economics 0073, University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi".
    6. Daniel Houser & Thomas Stratmann, 2008. "Selling favors in the lab: experiments on campaign finance reform," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 136(1), pages 215-239, July.
    7. Evrenk, Haldun & Lambie-Hanson, Timothy & Xu, Yourong, 2013. "Party-bosses vs. party-primaries: Quality of legislature under different selectorates," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 168-182.

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