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Just hire your spouse! Evidence from a political scandal in Bavaria

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  • Björn Kauder
  • Niklas Potrafke

Abstract

We investigate a case of political favoritism. Some members of the Bavarian parliament hired relatives as office employees who were paid using taxpayers’ money. The family scandal was a hot issue in the German media because of the upcoming state and federal elections. We examine whether being involved in the scandal influenced re-election prospects and voter turnout. The results do not show that being involved in the scandal influenced the outcome and voter turnout of the 2013 state elections. Voters did not appear to punish the incumbent government because the reigning CSU endorses Bavarian identity and managed to overcome the family scandal, as the CSU already managed to overcome previous scandals.

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  • Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2014. "Just hire your spouse! Evidence from a political scandal in Bavaria," ifo Working Paper Series 194, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ifowps:_194
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    Cited by:

    1. Hillman, Arye L. & Metsuyanim, Kfir & Potrafke, Niklas, 2015. "Democracy with group identity," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 40(PB), pages 274-287.
    2. Gehring, Kai & Kauffeldt, T. Florian & Vadlamannati, Krishna Chaitanya, 2019. "Crime, incentives and political effort: Evidence from India," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 1-20.
    3. Potrafke, Niklas, 2019. "Electoral cycles in perceived corruption: International empirical evidence," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 215-224.
    4. Arye L. Hillman & Heinrich W. Ursprung, 2016. "Where are the rent seekers?," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 124-141, June.
    5. Niklas Potrafke & Felix Roesel, 2019. "A banana republic? The effects of inconsistencies in the counting of votes on voting behavior," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 178(1), pages 231-265, January.
    6. Geschwind, Stephan & Roesel, Felix, 2022. "Taxation under direct democracy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 200(C), pages 536-554.
    7. Klomp, Jeroen, 2019. "Does government ideology shake or shape the public finances? Empirical evidence of disaster assistance," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 118-127.
    8. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2022. "Rewarding conservative politicians? Evidence from voting on same-sex marriage," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 191(1), pages 161-172, April.
    9. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2016. "Supermajorities and Political Rent Extraction," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(1), pages 65-81, February.
    10. Le Moglie, Marco & Turati, Gilberto, 2019. "Electoral cycle bias in the media coverage of corruption news," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 163(C), pages 140-157.
    11. Larcinese, Valentino & Sircar, Indraneel, 2017. "Crime and punishment the British way: Accountability channels following the MPs’ expenses scandal," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 75-99.
    12. Ralf Dewenter & Uwe Dulleck & Tobias Thomas, 2020. "Does the 4th estate deliver? The Political Coverage Index and its application to media capture," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 31(3), pages 292-328, September.
    13. Niklas Potrafke & Felix Roesel, 2020. "Opening hours of polling stations and voter turnout: Evidence from a natural experiment," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 133-163, January.
    14. Nadine Fabritz, 2015. "ICT as an Enabler of Innovation. Evidence from German Microdata," ifo Working Paper Series 195, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    15. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke & Leonard Thielmann, 2015. "Just Employ a Woman! An Investigation of the Family Relatives Affair in Bavaria," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 68(01), pages 50-55, January.
    16. Niklas Potrafke & Felix Rösel, 2016. "A Banana Republic? Trust in Electoral Institutions in Western Democracies - Evidence from a Presidential Election in Austria," CESifo Working Paper Series 6254, CESifo.
    17. Björn Kauder & Manuela Krause & Niklas Potrafke, 2018. "Electoral cycles in MPs’ salaries: evidence from the German states," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 25(4), pages 981-1000, August.
    18. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2018. "Why do CSU/CDU Members Vote for Marriage for All? If They Face Competition Within Their Constituency!," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 71(24), pages 26-27, December.
    19. Luisa Dörr & Klaus Gründler & Philipp Heil & Martin Mosler & Niklas Potrafke, 2020. "Epidemics and Office-Holders," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 73(07), pages 47-51, July.
    20. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2017. "Do Bundestag MPs Who Fail to Toe the Party Line Get Told Off," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 70(12), pages 26-29, June.
    21. Rienks, Harm, 2023. "Corruption, scandals and incompetence: Do voters care?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 79(C).
    22. Dewenter, Ralf & Linder, Melissa & Thomas, Tobias, 2019. "Can media drive the electorate? The impact of media coverage on voting intentions," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 245-261.
    23. Aidt, Toke S. & Hillman, Arye L. & Qijun, LIU, 2020. "Who takes bribes and how much? Evidence from the China Corruption Conviction Databank," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 133(C).
    24. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke & Alexander Stecher, 2015. "Just Hire Your Wife! The Relatives Affair in Bavaria – Part Two of the Analysis," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 68(20), pages 20-24, October.
    25. Wochner, Timo, 2022. "Part-time parliamentarians? Evidence from outside earnings and parliamentary activities," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General
    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values

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