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Do Legislators Pay to Deviate from Constituents?


  • Edward López

    () (Department of Economics, University of North Texas)

  • Noel D. Campbell

    (North Georgia College and State University)


In their survey of the legislator shirking literature, Bender and Lott (1996) point to 4 areas of relative consensus regarding legislator voting: 1. legislators almost always represent their constituents' interests, 2. when legislators do diverge from constituent interests, the adverse economic effects on constituents are trivial, 3. when legislators do not attempt re-election, their attendance rates fall, and 4. even small deviations from constituent interests quickly lead incumbents to lose re-election. In this study, this last result is continued by investigating whether incumbents who deviate more frequently or further from their constituents' interests tend to increase their total campaign expenditure to retain their seats, other things equal.

Suggested Citation

  • Edward López & Noel D. Campbell, 2004. "Do Legislators Pay to Deviate from Constituents?," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 349-363, Summer.
  • Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:30:y:2004:i:3:p:349-363

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    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior


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