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Lobbying Legislatures

Author

Listed:
  • Morten Bennedsen

    (Copenhagen Business School)

  • Sven E. Feldmann

    (University of Chicago)

Abstract

We analyze informational lobbying in the context of multi-member legislatures. We show that a single decision maker and a decentralized majoritarian legislature provide widely different incentives for interest groups to acquire and transmit policy relevant information. The paper also shows a difference in the opportunity to affect policy through lobbying between a parliamentary legislature and a legislature low voting cohesion, such as the U.S. Congress. We show that the incentives to lobby a parliamentary legislature are much lower than to lobby Congress. The results provide a rationale for why lobby groups are more active in the U.S. Congress. The key institutional feature to explain the different behavior of lobby groups is the vote of confidence procedure, which creates voting cohesion in a parliamentary system across policy issues. We show that the flexibility of creating majorities in the Congress creates an incentive for interest groups to play an active role in the design of policy in the congressional system, while the voting cohesion in the parliamentary system dissuades interest group's incentive to engage in information provision.

Suggested Citation

  • Morten Bennedsen & Sven E. Feldmann, 2000. "Lobbying Legislatures," CIE Discussion Papers 2000-04, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. Centre for Industrial Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kud:kuieci:2000-04
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    File URL: http://www.econ.ku.dk/cie/dp/dp_2000-2002/2000-04.pdf/
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Helpman Elhanan & Persson Torsten, 2001. "Lobbying and Legislative Bargaining," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 1-33, November.
    2. Persson, Torsten, 1998. "Economic Policy and Special Interest Politics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(447), pages 310-327, March.
    3. Laffont, J.-J., 1999. "Political Economy, Information and Incentives," Papers 99.516, Toulouse - GREMAQ.
    4. repec:cup:apsrev:v:92:y:1998:i:03:p:611-621_21 is not listed on IDEAS
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    6. Stratmann, Thomas, 1992. "Are Contributions Rational? Untangling Strategies of Political Action Committees," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 647-664, June.
    7. repec:cup:apsrev:v:89:y:1995:i:03:p:566-581_09 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:cup:apsrev:v:90:y:1996:i:02:p:303-315_20 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Weingast, Barry R & Shepsle, Kenneth A & Johnsen, Christopher, 1981. "The Political Economy of Benefits and Costs: A Neoclassical Approach to Distributive Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 642-664, August.
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    JEL classification:

    • H89 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Other

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