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Allocating the US Federal Budget to the States: the Impact of the President

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Listed:
  • Valentino Larcinese
  • Leonzio Rizzo
  • Cecilia Testa

Abstract

This paper provides new evidence on the determinants of the US federal budget allocation to the states. Departing from the existing literature that gives prominence to Congress, we carry on an empirical investigation on the impact of Presidents during the period 1982-2000. Our findings suggest that the distribution of federal outlays to the States is affected by presidential politics. First, presidential elections matter. States that heavily supported the incumbent President in past presidential elections tend to receive more funds, while marginal and swing states are not rewarded. Second, party affiliation also plays an important role since states whose governor has the same political affiliation of the President receive more federal funds, while states opposing the president's party in Congressional elections are penalized. These results show that presidents are engaged in tactical distribution of federal funds and also provide good evidence in support of partisan theories of budget allocation.

Suggested Citation

  • Valentino Larcinese & Leonzio Rizzo & Cecilia Testa, 2005. "Allocating the US Federal Budget to the States: the Impact of the President," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 03, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:stipep:03
    as

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Federal Budget; Pork-Barrell; President; Congress; Political Parties; Committees; American Elections;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H61 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Budget; Budget Systems
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General

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