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Lobbying in a multidimensional policy space with salient issues

  • P. Roberti
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    We present a citizen-candidate model on a multidimensional policy space with lobbying, where citizens regard some issues more salient than others. We find that special interest groups that lobby on less salient topics move the implemented policy closer to their preferred policy, compared to the ones that lobby on more salient issues. When we introduce two types of citizens, who differ with respect to the salience of issues, we find pooling equilibria where voters are not able to offset the effect of lobbying on the implemented policy. This result is in sharp contrast with previous work on unidimensional citizen-candidate models that predict the irrelevance of lobbying on the implemented policy. In an extension of the model we provide citizens with the possibility of giving monetary contributions to lobbies in order to increase their power. With more than one lobby per dimension we have two findings. First, under some conditions only the most extreme lobbies receive contributions. Second, the effectiveness of a lobby is maximized when the salience of an issue is low in the population and high for a small group of citizens.

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    File URL: http://www2.dse.unibo.it/wp/WP922.pdf
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    Paper provided by Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna in its series Working Papers with number wp922.

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    Date of creation: Jan 2014
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    Handle: RePEc:bol:bodewp:wp922
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    1. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 2008. "Issue Unbundling via Citizens' Initiatives," Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 3(4), pages 379-397, December.
    2. Leonardo Felli & Antonio Merlo, . "Endogenous Lobbying," CARESS Working Papres 00-03, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
    3. Edward L. Glaeser & Giacomo A. M. Ponzetto & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2004. "Strategic Extremism: Why Republicans and Democrats Divide on Religious Values," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2044, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    4. Krasa, Stefan & Polborn, Mattias, 2010. "The binary policy model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(2), pages 661-688, March.
    5. Abdul Ghafar Noury & Simon Hix & GĂ©rard Roland, 2006. "Dimensions of politics in the European Parliament," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/7750, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    6. Tim Besley & Stephen Coate, . "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," Penn CARESS Working Papers ecf70d639d700dba5327ab0c8, Penn Economics Department.
    7. Osborne, Martin J & Slivinski, Al, 1996. "A Model of Political Competition with Citizen-Candidates," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(1), pages 65-96, February.
    8. Lee, Woojin & Roemer, John E., 2006. "Racism and redistribution in the United States: A solution to the problem of American exceptionalism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 1027-1052, August.
    9. Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1986. "Menu Auctions, Resource Allocation, and Economic Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(1), pages 1-31, February.
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