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The closed primaries versus the top-two primary

Author

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  • Puy, M. Socorro
  • Martínez, Ricardo
  • Amorós, P.

Abstract

The top-two primary recently approved in states like Washington, California, and Alaska eliminates the closed party primaries and creates instead a single ballot in which the first and second place winners pass to the general election. We compare the electoral consequences of the top-two primary with those of the closed primaries. We present a model where each primary procedure induce a sequential game with three stages: candidate-entry stage, primary election, and general election. We analyze the equilibria of these games and show that the top-two primary contributes to political moderation and may increase the number of swing states.

Suggested Citation

  • Puy, M. Socorro & Martínez, Ricardo & Amorós, P., 2013. "The closed primaries versus the top-two primary," UC3M Working papers. Economics we1319, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:werepe:we1319
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jackson, Matthew O. & Mathevet, Laurent & Mattes, Kyle, 2007. "Nomination Processes and Policy Outcomes," Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 2(1), pages 67-92, March.
    2. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114.
    3. Hummel, Patrick, 2013. "Candidate strategies in primaries and general elections with candidates of heterogeneous quality," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 85-102.
    4. Amorós, P. & Martínez, Ricardo & Puy, M. Socorro, 2013. "The closed primaries versus the top-two primary," UC3M Working papers. Economics we1319, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
    5. Laurent Bouton, 2013. "A Theory of Strategic Voting in Runoff Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1248-1288, June.
    6. Rafael Hortala-Vallve & Hannes Mueller, 2015. "Primaries: the unifying force," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 163(3), pages 289-305, June.
    7. César Martinelli, 2002. "Simple plurality versus plurality runoff with privately informed voters," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 19(4), pages 901-919.
    8. Hirano, Shigeo & Snyder, James M. & Ansolabehere, Stephen & Hansen, John Mark, 2010. "Primary Elections and Partisan Polarization in the U.S. Congress," Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 5(2), pages 169-191, August.
    9. Bag, Parimal Kanti & Sabourian, Hamid & Winter, Eyal, 2009. "Multi-stage voting, sequential elimination and Condorcet consistency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(3), pages 1278-1299, May.
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    1. Puy, M. Socorro & Martínez, Ricardo & Amorós, P., 2013. "The closed primaries versus the top-two primary," UC3M Working papers. Economics we1319, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Voting system;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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