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Coattail effects and electoral coordination


  • Ignacio Lago
  • Marina Costa Lobo
  • Santiago Lago-Peñas


In this paper we challenge the conventional wisdom about the political consequences of electoral systems. We show that the psychological effects of an electoral system manifest themselves in founding elections in those countries in which there are coattail effects running from the more important to the less important offices. The artificial deflationary pressures induced by coattail effects make the psychological effects of electoral systems in elections for less important offices increase coordination failures after the founding election. The empirical evidence comes from district-level data in legislative, regional and European elections in five countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ignacio Lago & Marina Costa Lobo & Santiago Lago-Peñas, 2016. "Coattail effects and electoral coordination," Working Papers. Collection B: Regional and sectoral economics 1603, Universidade de Vigo, GEN - Governance and Economics research Network.
  • Handle: RePEc:gov:wpregi:1603

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Duch, Raymond M. & Palmer, Harvey D., 2002. "Strategic Voting in Post-Communist Democracy?," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 32(01), pages 63-91, January.
    2. Blais, André & Carty, R. K., 1991. "The Psychological Impact of Electoral Laws: Measuring Duverger's Elusive Factor," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 21(01), pages 79-93, January.
    3. repec:cup:apsrev:v:83:y:1989:i:03:p:835-858_08 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item


    Coattail effects; disproportionality; electoral systems; psychological effects; wasted votes.;

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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