The Market for Deadbeats
This article outlines three explanations for why states seek migrants and test them by reference to 1985-90 interstate migration flows. On race-for-the-top theories, states compete for value-increasing migrants by offering them healthy economies and efficient laws. On vote-seeking theories, states compete for clienteles of voters, with some states seeking to attract and some to deter welfare- or tax-loving migrants. On deadbeat theories, states compete for high human capital debtors by offering them a fresh start from out-of-state creditors. Our findings support vote-seeking and deadbeat theories. Copyright 1996 by the University of Chicago.