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Partisan targeting of inter-governmental transfers & state interference in local elections: evidence from Spain

Author

Listed:
  • Marta Curto-Grau

    () (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB)

  • Albert Solé-Ollé

    () (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB)

  • Pilar Sorribas-Navarro

    () (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB)

Abstract

We examine whether state-level incumbents discriminate in the allocation of transfers in favour of local governments controlled by co-partisans, and whether the electoral prospects of local incumbents improve when they are aligned with the state incumbent. Using a new database covering around 3,000 Spanish municipalities during the period 2000-07 and a Regression Discontinuity design, we document a very strong and robust effect: in close races, municipalities aligned with the regional government obtain on average 83% more per capita transfers and their incumbents gain 10% more votes at the local elections. We also show that the effect of alignment is stronger: (i) when regional and local elections are held on the same day, (ii) in regions with less competitive regional elections, and (ii) in regions with more budget resources.

Suggested Citation

  • Marta Curto-Grau & Albert Solé-Ollé & Pilar Sorribas-Navarro, 2012. "Partisan targeting of inter-governmental transfers & state interference in local elections: evidence from Spain," Working Papers 2012/31, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  • Handle: RePEc:ieb:wpaper:2012/6/doc2012-31
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Freier, Ronny & Odendahl, Christian, 2015. "Do parties matter? Estimating the effect of political power in multi-party systems," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 310-328.
    2. Thushyanthan Baskaran & Zohal Hessami, 2017. "Political alignment and intergovernmental transfers in parliamentary systems: evidence from Germany," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 171(1), pages 75-98, April.
    3. Jon H. Fiva & Olle Folke & Rune J. Sørensen, 2013. "The Power of Parties," CESifo Working Paper Series 4119, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Estache, Antonio & Garsous, Grégoire & Seroa da Motta, Ronaldo, 2016. "Shared Mandates, Moral Hazard, and Political (Mis)alignment in a Decentralized Economy," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 98-110.
    5. Levoshko, Tamila, 2017. ""Pork-Barrel"-Politik und das regionale Wirtschaftswachstum. Empirische Evidenz für die Ukraine und Polen," Working Papers 0642, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics.
    6. María F. Prada & Graciana Rucci & Sergio S. Urzúa, 2015. "The Effect of Mandated Child Care on Female Wages in Chile," NBER Working Papers 21080, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Muinelo-Gallo, Leonel & Rodriguez-Miranda, Adrián & Castro-Scavone, Pablo, 2017. "Intergovernmental transfers and regional income inequalities in Uruguay," MPRA Paper 76983, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. repec:kap:pubcho:v:171:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s11127-017-0435-y is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political parties; inter-governmental transfers; pork barrel politics;

    JEL classification:

    • C2 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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