The pronouncements of paranoid politicians
This paper models the strategic encounter of two office-motivated candidates who may or may not announce policy. In the case of no announcement, the voters rank the candidates according to prior beliefs. In the case of announcement, the candidates cannot avoid a degree of noise in the voters' interpretation of their announcements. We show that this simple deviation from the standard Downsian setting suffices to overcome previous impossibility results which suggest that not announcing policy can never occur in equilibrium. Also, we extend the model to study the equilibrium when candidates are ambiguity averse. An ambiguity averse candidate is interpreted as being concerned about an ongoing negative campaign against him. This negative campaign would consist in inducing the voters to adopt some interpretation of the candidate's announcement unfavorable to his electoral performance. We show that under ambiguity aversion the candidates opt not to announce position under less stringent conditions than expected utility. Finally, we use data on U.S. Senate elections to test an empirical implication of the model. We find that the relevant coefficient has the sign predicted by the theory and is statistically significant.
|Date of creation:||10 Aug 2007|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Itzhak Gilboa & David Schmeidler, 1991.
"Updating Ambiguous Beliefs,"
924, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Massimo Morelli, 2004.
"Party Formation and Policy Outcomes under Different Electoral Systems,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71, pages 829-853, 07.
- Massimo Morelli, 2004. "Party Formation and Policy Outcomes under Different Electoral Systems," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(3), pages 829-853.
- Massimo Morelli, 2001. "Party Formation and Policy Outcomes under Different Electoral Systems," Economics Working Papers 0018, Institute for Advanced Study, School of Social Science.
- Morelli, Massimo, 1998. "Party Formation and Policy Outcomes Under Different Electoral Systems," Staff General Research Papers 1242, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- Marcus Berliant & Hideo Konishi, 2004.
"Salience: Agenda Choices by Competing Candidates,"
Boston College Working Papers in Economics
603, Boston College Department of Economics.
- Gilboa, Itzhak & Schmeidler, David, 1989. "Maxmin expected utility with non-unique prior," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 141-153, April.
- Enriqueta Aragonés & Zvika Neeman, 1994.
"Strategic ambiguity in electoral competition,"
Economics Working Papers
162, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 1996.
- Enriqueta Aragonés & Andrew Postlewaite, 1999. "Ambiguity in election games," Economics Working Papers 364, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
- McKelvey, Richard D. & Patty, John W., 2006. "A theory of voting in large elections," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 155-180, October.
- Epstein, Larry G. & Schneider, Martin, 2003.
Journal of Economic Theory,
Elsevier, vol. 113(1), pages 1-31, November.
- Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2006.
"Media Bias and Reputation,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(2), pages 280-316, April.
- Maccheroni, Fabio & Marinacci, Massimo & Rustichini, Aldo, 2006.
"Dynamic variational preferences,"
Journal of Economic Theory,
Elsevier, vol. 128(1), pages 4-44, May.
- Adams, James, 1999. " Multiparty Spatial Competition with Probabilistic Voting," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 99(3-4), pages 259-74, June.
- Osborne, Martin J., 2000. "Entry-deterring policy differentiation by electoral candidates," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 41-62, July.
- repec:cup:cbooks:9780521815888 is not listed on IDEAS
- Enriqueta Aragonès & Thomas Palfrey & Andrew Postlewaite, 2007.
"Political Reputations and Campaign Promises,"
Journal of the European Economic Association,
MIT Press, vol. 5(4), pages 846-884, 06.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:4473. 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: (Ekkehart Schlicht)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.