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Politician Preferences and Caps on Political Lobbying

  • Pastine, Ivan
  • Pastine, Tuvana

This paper extends Che and Gale (1998) by allowing the incumbent politician to have a preference for the policy position of one of the lobbyists. The effect of a contribution cap is analyzed where two lobbyists contest for a political prize. The cap always helps the lobbyist whose policy position is preferred by the politician no matter whether it is the high-valuation or the low-valuation contestant. In contrast to Che and Gale, once the cap is binding a more restrictive cap always reduces expected aggregate contributions. However, the politician might support the legislation of a barely binding cap. When politician policy preferences perfectly reflect the will of the people, a more restrictive cap is always welfare increasing. When lobbyist's valuations completely internalize all social costs and benefits, a cap is welfare improving if and only if the politician favors the high-value policy. Even a barely binding cap can have significant welfare consequences.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5913.

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Date of creation: Nov 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5913
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  1. Prat, A., 1998. "Campaign Spending with Office-Seeking Politicians, Rational Voters and Multiple Lobbies," Discussion Paper 1998-123, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  2. E. Feess & Gerd Muehlheusser & M. Walzl, 2008. "Unfair contests," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 93(3), pages 267-291, 04.
    • Feess Eberhard & Muehlheusser Gerd & Walzl Markus, 2004. "Unfair Contests," Research Memorandum 050, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
  3. Drazen, Allan & Limao, Nuno & Stratmann, Thomas, 2007. "Political contribution caps and lobby formation: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(3-4), pages 723-754, April.
  4. Che, Yeon-Koo & Gale, Ian L, 1998. "Caps on Political Lobbying," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 643-51, June.
  5. Che, Yeon-Koo & Gale, Ian, 2006. "Caps on Political Lobbying: Reply," MPRA Paper 6097, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D. & De Vries, C.G., 1992. "Rigging the Lobbying Process: An Application of the All- Pay Auction," Papers 9-92-2, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  7. Todd Kaplan, 2001. "All-Pay Auctions with Variable Rewards," Discussion Papers 0109, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  8. Yildirim, Huseyin, 2005. "Contests with multiple rounds," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 213-227, April.
  9. Amegashie, J Atsu, 2003. " The All-Pay Auction When a Committee Awards the Prize," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 116(1-2), pages 79-90, July.
  10. Arye L. Hillman & John G. Riley, 1987. "Politically Contestable Rents and Transfers," UCLA Economics Working Papers 452, UCLA Department of Economics.
  11. Corns, Allan & Schotter, Andrew, 1996. "Can Affirmative Action be Cost-Effective? An Experimental Examination of Price-Preference Auctions," Working Papers 96-02, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  12. Todd R. Kaplan & David Wettstein, 2006. "Caps on Political Lobbying: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1351-1354, September.
  13. Qiang Fu, 2006. "A Theory of Affirmative Action in College Admissions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 44(3), pages 420-428, July.
  14. Fang, Hanming, 2002. " Lottery versus All-Pay Auction Models of Lobbying," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 112(3-4), pages 351-71, September.
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