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Vote-share Contracts and Democracy

  • Gersbach, Hans

In this paper we introduce vote-share contracts. Such contracts contain a vote-share threshold that incumbents must reach in order to be reelected. In a simple model, we illustrate the working of vote-share contracts. Such vote-share contracts curb socially detrimental incumbency advantages by improving the average ability level of re-elected politicians and also increase effort. We show that the socially optimal vote-share threshold for incumbents is larger than one half. Competing candidates offer vote-share contracts with socially optimal thresholds.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6497.

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Date of creation: Sep 2007
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6497
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  1. Gregory D. Hess & Athanasios Orphanides, 1999. "War and Democracy," CESifo Working Paper Series 201, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Hans Gersbach & Markus Müller, 2006. "Elections, Contracts and Markets," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 06/56, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  3. Justin Buchler, 2007. "The social sub-optimality of competitive elections," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 133(3), pages 439-456, December.
  4. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2007. "Bureaucrats or Politicians? Part I: A Single Policy Task," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 169-179, March.
  5. Daniel Diermeier & Michael Keane & Antonio Merlo, 2004. "A Political Economy Model of Congressional Careers," Discussion Papers 1387, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  6. Larry Samuelson, 1984. "Electoral equilibria with restricted strategies," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 43(3), pages 307-327, January.
  7. Alberto Alesina & Alex Cukierman, 1987. "The Politics of Ambiguity," NBER Working Papers 2468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Anderson, Simon P & Glomm, Gerhard, 1992. " Incumbency Effects in Political Campaigns," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 74(2), pages 207-19, September.
  9. Rogoff, Kenneth & Sibert, Anne, 1988. "Elections and Macroeconomic Policy Cycles," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 1-16, January.
  10. Scott Ashworth, 2005. "Reputational Dynamics and Political Careers," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(2), pages 441-466, October.
  11. Bernhardt, M. Daniel & Ingerman, Daniel E., 1985. "Candidate reputations and the `incumbency effect'," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 47-67, June.
  12. Cukierman, A. & Tommasi, M., 1997. "When Does It Take a Nixon to Go to China," Papers 30-97, Tel Aviv.
  13. Hess, Gregory D & Orphanides, Athanasios, 1995. "War Politics: An Economic, Rational-Voter Framework," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(4), pages 828-46, September.
  14. Hans Gersbach, 2001. "Competition of Politicians for Incentive Contracts and Elections," CESifo Working Paper Series 406, CESifo Group Munich.
  15. Banks, Jeffrey S. & Sundaram, Rangarajan K., 1998. "Optimal Retention in Agency Problems," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 293-323, October.
  16. Gersbach, Hans, 1992. "Allocation of information by majority decisions," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 259-268, July.
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