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Policy Reversals and Electoral Competition with Privately Informed Parties

  • Cesar Martinelli

    (Centro de Investigacion Economica (CIE), Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico (ITAM))

  • Akihiko Matsui

    ()

    (University of Tokyo & University of Tsukuba)

We develop a spatial model of competition between two policy-motivated parties. Parties know a state of the world which determines which policies are desirable for voters, while voters do not. The announced positions of the parties serve as signals to the voters concerning the parties' private information. In all separating equilibria, when the left-wing party attains power, the policies it implements are to the right of the policies implemented by the right-wing party when it attains power. The intuition behind this result is that when right-wing policies become more attractive, the left party moves toward the right in order to be assured of winning, while the right-wing party stays put in a radical stance.

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File URL: http://ftp.itam.mx/pub/academico/inves/martinelli/00-03.pdf
File Function: First version, 2000
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Paper provided by Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM in its series Working Papers with number 0003.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2000
Date of revision: Jul 2000
Handle: RePEc:cie:wpaper:0003
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  1. Roemer, J.E., 1992. "The Emergence of Party Ideology when Voter Are Uncertain about How the Economy Works," Papers 396, California Davis - Institute of Governmental Affairs.
  2. Roger B. Myerson, 1994. "Extended Poisson Games and the Condorcet Jury Theorem," Discussion Papers 1103, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Harrington, Joseph E, Jr, 1993. "Economic Policy, Economic Performance, and Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 27-42, March.
  4. Robert Gibbons, 1988. "Learning in Equilibrium Models of Arbitration," Working papers 485, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  5. Cukierman, A. & Tommasi, M., 1997. "When Does It Take a Nixon to Go to China," Papers 30-97, Tel Aviv.
  6. Schultz, Christian, 1996. "Polarization and Inefficient Policies," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(2), pages 331-44, April.
  7. Kyle Bagwell & Garey Ramey, 1989. "Oligopoly Limit Pricing," Discussion Papers 829, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  8. Rodrik, Dani, 1993. "The Positive Economics of Policy Reform," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 356-61, May.
  9. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1997. "Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections with Private Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1029-1058, September.
  10. Banks, Jeffrey S., 1990. "A model of electoral competition with incomplete information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 309-325, April.
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