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Vote Shares in Spanish General Elections as a Fractional Response to the Economy and Conflict

  • Javier Gardeazabal

In this paper we study the response of vote shares to economic fluctuations and conflict. Spain seems to be the ideal niche for a case study like this since it has experienced both phenomena during the last decades. Recent Spanish democratic history has witnessed four complete economic cycles, with deep recessions and pronounced booms. During this period, there has been a nationalistic conflict with terrorist manifestation. We use Spanish provincial data from the ten congressional elections since the end of Franco's dictatorship. Vote shares at provincial level are modeled as fractional responses to unemployment, inflation, terrorism assassinations, turnout and other factors. The statistical model used, a fractional probit, specifies conditional means of district and election unobserved effects as linear functions of the covariates. Estimates of National Partial Effects (NPE), i.e. the effect on national vote shares of changes in unemployment, inflation and terrorism are statistically significant and quantitatively important. In addition, vote shares respond to participation rates and these also depend on economic factors and terrorism, thus creating an endogeneity problem. The expected margin of victory is then used as instrument for turnout.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.356877.de/diw_econsec0033.pdf
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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Economics of Security Working Paper Series with number 33.

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Length: 28 p.
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diweos:diweos33
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  1. Papke, Leslie E. & Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 2008. "Panel data methods for fractional response variables with an application to test pass rates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 145(1-2), pages 121-133, July.
  2. Arianna Degan & Antonio Merlo, 2004. "A Structural Model of Turnout and Voting in Multiple Elections," PIER Working Paper Archive 06-021, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 01 Aug 2006.
  3. Esteban F. Klory & Eyal Winter, 2006. "On Public Opinion Polls and Voters' Turnout," Levine's Working Paper Archive 321307000000000451, David K. Levine.
  4. Mundlak, Yair, 1978. "On the Pooling of Time Series and Cross Section Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 69-85, January.
  5. Timothy Feddersen & Alvaro Sandroni, 2006. "A Theory of Participation in Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1271-1282, September.
  6. Claude Berrebi & Esteban F. Klor, 2008. "Are Voters Sensitive to Terrorism?: Direct Evidence from the Israeli Electorate," Working Papers 477-1, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  7. Leslie E. Papke & Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 1993. "Econometric Methods for Fractional Response Variables with an Application to 401(k) Plan Participation Rates," NBER Technical Working Papers 0147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
  9. Laura Mayoral & Juan J. Dolado & Jes�s Gonzalo, 2003. "Long-range dependence in Spanish political opinion poll series," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(2), pages 137-155.
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