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Regional Grants as Pork Barrel Politics

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  • Kevin Milligan
  • Michael Smart

Abstract

We investigate the political and economic factors influencing the allocation of regional development grants for a panel of Canadian electoral districts in the 1988-2001 period. In a strong party system such as Canada’s, models of political competition predict little role for individual legislators, as party leaders allocate resources to maximize party success. While spending is targeted toward some “swing” districts, we do also find it is higher in districts represented by members of the government party, especially those in the federal Cabinet, and those of lower seniority. We develop a model featuring bargaining over legislative and non-legislative favours that is consistent with the evidence.

Suggested Citation

  • Kevin Milligan & Michael Smart, 2005. "Regional Grants as Pork Barrel Politics," CESifo Working Paper Series 1453, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1453
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp1453.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Luca, Davide & Rodriguez-Pose, Andres, 2014. "Electoral politics and regional development: assessing the geographical allocation of public investment in Turkey," CEPR Discussion Papers 10043, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Sengupta, Bodhisattva, 2011. "Provision of public goods in a federal economy: The role of party politics," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 104-119, March.
    3. Guccio, Calogero & Mazza, Isidoro, 2014. "On the political determinants of the allocation of funds to heritage authorities," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 18-38.
    4. Leigh, Andrew & Neill, Christine, 2011. "Can national infrastructure spending reduce local unemployment? Evidence from an Australian roads program," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 113(2), pages 150-153.
    5. Marco Portmann & David Stadelmann & Reiner Eichenberger, 2010. "District Magnitude and Representation of the Majority?s Preferences: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from Popular and Parliamentary Votes," CREMA Working Paper Series 2010-13, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    6. Marco Portmann & David Stadelmann & Reiner Eichenberger, 2012. "District magnitude and representation of the majority’s preferences: Evidence from popular and parliamentary votes," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 151(3), pages 585-610, June.
    7. Florence Bouvet & Sandy Dall'Erba, 2010. "European Regional Structural Funds: How Large is the Influence of Politics on the Allocation Process?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48, pages 501-528, June.
    8. Albert Solé-Ollé, 2013. "Inter-regional redistribution through infrastructure investment: tactical or programmatic?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 156(1), pages 229-252, July.
    9. Gonzales-Eiras, Martín & Niepelt, Dirk, 2004. "Sustaining Social Security," Seminar Papers 731, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    10. Chandler, Vincent, 2011. "The Canada economic action plan as electoral tool," MPRA Paper 33594, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Larcinese, Valentino & Snyder, Jr., James M. & Testa, Cecilia, 2006. "Testing models of distributive politics using exit polls to measure voter preferences and partisanship," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3605, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    12. Boadway, Robin & Tremblay, Jean-François, 2012. "Reassessment of the Tiebout model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(11), pages 1063-1078.
    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. Jan Werner & Laurent Guihéry & Ognjen Djukic, 2006. "Fiscal Federalism in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Ten Years after the Dayton Treatment and Still not in a Steady Condition," Post-Print halshs-00300713, HAL.
    15. Jennes, Geert & Persyn, Damiaan, 2015. "The effect of political representation on the geographic distribution of income: Evidence using Belgian data," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 178-194.
    16. Bernardino Benito & María-Dolores Guillamón & Francisco Bastida, 2015. "Budget Forecast Deviations in Municipal Governments: Determinants and Implications," Australian Accounting Review, CPA Australia, vol. 25(1), pages 45-70, March.
    17. Spáč Peter, 2016. "For the Game, for the Loyal Partisans: Distribution of Sport Grants in Slovakia," Central European Journal of Public Policy, Sciendo, vol. 10(1), pages 12-21, May.
    18. Petra Ens, 2009. "Tax competition and equalization: the impact of voluntary cooperation on the efficiency goal," Working Papers 2009/16, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    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.

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