IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bge/wpaper/483.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Are Rules-based Government Programs Shielded from Special-Interest Politics? Evidence from Revenue-Sharing Transfers in Brazil

Author

Listed:
  • Stephan Litschig

Abstract

Manipulation of government finances for the benefit of narrowly defined groups is usually thought to be limited to the part of the budget over which politicians exercise discretion in the short run, such as earmarks. Analyzing a revenue-sharing program between the central and local governments in Brazil that uses an allocation formula based on local population estimates, I document two main results: first, that the population estimates entering the formula were manipulated and second, that this manipulation was political in nature. Consistent with swing-voter targeting by the right-wing central government, I find that municipalities with roughly equal right-wing and non-right-wing vote shares benefited relative to opposition or conservative core support municipalities. These findings suggest that the exclusive focus on discretionary transfers in the extant empirical literature on special-interest politics may understate the true scope of tactical redistribution that is going on under programmatic disguise.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephan Litschig, 2010. "Are Rules-based Government Programs Shielded from Special-Interest Politics? Evidence from Revenue-Sharing Transfers in Brazil," Working Papers 483, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:483
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.barcelonagse.eu/sites/default/files/working_paper_pdfs/483.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Khemani, Stuti, 2007. "Does delegation of fiscal policy to an independent agency make a difference? Evidence from intergovernmental transfers in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 464-484, March.
    2. Assar Lindbeck & Jörgen Weibull, 1987. "Balanced-budget redistribution as the outcome of political competition," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 52(3), pages 273-297, January.
    3. Solé-Ollé, Albert & Sorribas-Navarro, Pilar, 2008. "The effects of partisan alignment on the allocation of intergovernmental transfers. Differences-in-differences estimates for Spain," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(12), pages 2302-2319, December.
    4. repec:cup:apsrev:v:94:y:2000:i:02:p:289-304_22 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Solé-Ollé, Albert & Sorribas-Navarro, Pilar, 2008. "The effects of partisan alignment on the allocation of intergovernmental transfers. Differences-in-differences estimates for Spain," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(12), pages 2302-2319, December.
    6. Robin Boadway & Anwar Shah, 2007. "Intergovernmental Fiscal Transfers : Principles and Practice," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7171, January.
    7. Wright, Gavin, 1974. "The Political Economy of New Deal Spending: An Econometric Analysis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 56(1), pages 30-38, February.
    8. Arulampalam, Wiji & Dasgupta, Sugato & Dhillon, Amrita & Dutta, Bhaskar, 2009. "Electoral goals and center-state transfers: A theoretical model and empirical evidence from India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 103-119, January.
    9. repec:cup:apsrev:v:96:y:2002:i:01:p:27-40_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Adriana Camacho & Emily Conover, 2009. "Manipulation of Social Program Eligibility: Detection, Explanations and Consequences for Empirical Research," Documentos CEDE 006211, Universidad de los Andes - CEDE.
    11. repec:cup:apsrev:v:102:y:2008:i:01:p:19-31_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Dahlberg, Matz & Johansson, Eva, 2002. "On the Vote-Purchasing Behavior of Incumbent Governments," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 96(1), pages 27-40, March.
    13. Case, Anne, 2001. "Election goals and income redistribution: Recent evidence from Albania," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 405-423, March.
    14. Stephen Ansolabehere & James M. Snyder, 2006. "Party Control of State Government and the Distribution of Public Expenditures," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 108(4), pages 547-569, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Bureaucracy; institutions; redistributive politics; electoral competition;

    JEL classification:

    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:483. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bruno Guallar). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/bargses.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.