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Testing Models Of Distributive Politicsusing Exit Polls To Measure Voterpreferences And Partisanship

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  • Valentino Larcinese
  • James M. Snyder, Jr.
  • Cecilia Testa

Abstract

This paper tests various hypotheses about distributive politics by studying the distributionof federal spending across U.S. states over the period 1978-2002. We improve onprevious work by using survey data to measure the share of voters in each state that areDemocrats, Republicans, and independents, or liberals, conservatives and moderates. Wefind no evidence for the "swing voter" hypothesis { that is, no significant associationbetween the amount of federal funds a state receives and the fraction of independents ormoderates in the state. We also find no evidence for the "battleground state" hypothesis -no significant association between the amount of federal funds and the degree of partisanbalance in a state. Modest support is found for the \partisan supporters" hypothesis, whichconjectures that politicians will favour areas that contain a large percentage of their coresupporters.

Suggested Citation

  • Valentino Larcinese & James M. Snyder, Jr. & Cecilia Testa, 2006. "Testing Models Of Distributive Politicsusing Exit Polls To Measure Voterpreferences And Partisanship," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 19, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:stipep:19
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    Cited by:

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    2. Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Economic Freedom and Government Ideology across the German States," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(3), pages 433-449, March.
    3. C. Reynolds, 2014. "State politics, tuition, and the dynamics of a political budget cycle," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(4), pages 1241-1270, June.
    4. Rhode, Paul W. & Snyder, Jr., James M. & Strumpf, Koleman, 2018. "The arsenal of democracy: Production and politics during WWII," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 166(C), pages 145-161.
    5. Hill, Andrew J. & Jones, Daniel B., 2017. "Does partisan affiliation impact the distribution of spending? Evidence from state governments’ expenditures on education," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 143(C), pages 58-77.
    6. Gregor, András, 2020. "Intergovernmental transfers and political competition measured by pivotal probability - Evidence from Hungary," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C).
    7. Testa, Cecilia, 2012. "Is polarization bad?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(6), pages 1104-1118.
    8. Christian Bjørnskov & Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "The size and scope of government in the US states: does party ideology matter?," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 20(4), pages 687-714, August.
    9. Cinnirella, Francesco & Schueler, Ruth, 2018. "Nation building: The role of central spending in education," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 18-39.
    10. Jean-Francois Maystadt & Muhammad Kabir Salihu, 2015. "National or political cake?," Working Papers 100756558, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
    11. Solé-Ollé, Albert & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2012. "Lobbying, political competition, and local land supply: Recent evidence from Spain," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(1), pages 10-19.
    12. Gonschorek, Gerrit J. & Schulze, Günther G. & Sjahrir, Bambang Suharnoko, 2018. "To the ones in need or the ones you need? The political economy of central discretionary grants − empirical evidence from Indonesia," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 240-260.
    13. Marcelin Joanis, 2011. "The road to power: partisan loyalty and the centralized provision of local infrastructure," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 146(1), pages 117-143, January.
    14. Casas, Agustin, 2020. "The electoral benefits of unemployment, clientelism and distributive politics," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 129(C).
    15. Helmut Herwartz & Bernd Theilen, 2014. "On the political and fiscal determinants of income redistribution under federalism and democracy: evidence from Germany," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 159(1), pages 121-139, April.
    16. David M. Primo & James M. Snyder, Jr., 2010. "Party Strength, the Personal Vote, and Government Spending," American Journal of Political Science, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 54(2), pages 354-370, April.
    17. repec:ecl:stabus:2099 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Katherine Casey & Rachel Glennerster & Edward Miguel, 2014. "Healing the Wounds: Learning from Sierra Leone's Postwar Institutional Reforms," NBER Chapters, in: African Successes, Volume I: Government and Institutions, pages 15-32, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Marco Migueis, 2013. "The Effect of Political Alignment on Transfers to Portuguese Municipalities," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(1), pages 110-133, March.
    20. Verena Kroth & Valentino Larcinese & Joachim Wehner, 2016. "A Better Life for All? Democratization and Electrification in Post-Apartheid South Africa," STICERD - Economic Organisation and Public Policy Discussion Papers Series 60, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
    21. Davide Luca, 2018. "Picking Winners at the Ballot Box: Votes and Local Economic Growth in Turkey," Working Papers 1232, Economic Research Forum, revised 10 Oct 2018.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Electoral competition; swing voter; partisanship; election closeness; USFederal Spending.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D78 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Positive Analysis of Policy Formulation and Implementation
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General

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