IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/diw/diwwpp/dp1462.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Turnout and Closeness: Evidence from 60 Years of Bavarian Mayoral Elections

Author

Listed:
  • Felix Arnold

Abstract

One prediction of the calculus of voting is that electoral closeness positively affects turnout via a higher probability of one vote being decisive. I test this theory with data on all mayoral elections in the German state of Bavaria between 1946 and 2009. Importantly, I use constitutionally prescribed two-round elections to measure electoral closeness and thereby improve on existing work that mostly uses ex- post measures that are prone to endogeneity. The results suggest that electoral closeness matters: A one standard deviation increase in close- ness increases turnout by 1.68 percentage points, which corresponds to 1 6 of a standard deviation in this variable. I also evaluate how other factors like electorate size or rain on election day affect turnout differentially depending on the closeness of the race.

Suggested Citation

  • Felix Arnold, 2015. "Turnout and Closeness: Evidence from 60 Years of Bavarian Mayoral Elections," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1462, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp1462
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.499182.de/dp1462.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Christine Fauvelle-Aymar & Abel François, 2006. "The impact of closeness on turnout: An empirical relation based on a study of a two-round ballot," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 127(3), pages 461-483, June.
    2. Ferreira, Fernando & Gyourko, Joseph, 2014. "Does gender matter for political leadership? The case of U.S. mayors," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 112(C), pages 24-39.
    3. Áron Kiss & Gábor Simonovits, 2014. "Identifying the bandwagon effect in two-round elections," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 160(3), pages 327-344, September.
    4. Felix Arnold & Ronny Freier, 2015. "The Partisan Effects of Voter Turnout: How Conservatives Profit from Rainy Election Days," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1463, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    5. Jørgen Juel Andersen & Jon H. Fiva & Gisle James Natvik, 2010. "Voting when the Stakes are High," CESifo Working Paper Series 3167, CESifo Group Munich.
    6. Thomas Schwartz, 1987. "Your vote counts on account of the way it is counted: An institutional solution to the paradox of not voting," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 54(2), pages 101-121, January.
    7. Ronny Freier & Sebastian Thomasius, 2016. "Voters prefer more qualified mayors, but does it matter for public finances? Evidence for Germany," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 23(5), pages 875-910, October.
    8. Ronny Freier, 2011. "Incumbency as the Major Advantage: The Electoral Advantage for Parties of Incumbent Mayors," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1147, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    9. Schild, Christopher-Johannes, 2013. "Do female mayors make a difference? Evidence from Bavaria," FAU Discussion Papers in Economics 07/2013, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Institute for Economics.
    10. Maria Paola & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2014. "The impact of closeness on electoral participation exploiting the Italian double ballot system," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 160(3), pages 467-479, September.
    11. Hansford, Thomas G. & Gomez, Brad T., 2010. "Estimating the Electoral Effects of Voter Turnout," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 104(2), pages 268-288, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Turnout; closeness; mayoral elections; Bavaria; two-round ballot;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp1462. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bibliothek). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/diwbede.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.