Political reputations and campaign promises
We analyze conditions under which candidates' reputations may affect voters' beliefs over what policy will be implemented by the winning candidate of an election. We develop a model of repeated elections with complete information in which candidates are purely ideological. We analyze an equilibrium in which voters' strategies involve a credible threat to punish candidates who renege on their campaign promises and in which all campaign promises are believed by voters and honored by candidates. We characterize the maximal credible campaign promises and find that the degree to which promises are credible in equilibrium is an increasing function of the value of a candidate's reputation. (JEL: D8) (c) 2007 by the European Economic Association.
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