Would You Trust An Italian Politician? Preliminary Evidence From Italian Regional Politics
This paper evaluates the erosion of electoral accountability of the "Governors" of the Italian Regions in three subsequent political moments: 1) the elections; 2) the inaugural speeches of the Governor; 3) their first important policy decision, the long-term regional budget (DPEFR). We use content analysis (Laver et al., 2003) to assess the position of each Governor on a left to right distribution at the moment of the inaugural speeches and of the DPEFR. We then analyze the correlation between the distributions of 1) the electoral results and the inaugural speeches and 2) the inaugural speeches and the DPEFR, under the hypothesis that greater similarity can be interpreted as greater accountability. The analysis detects some erosion of accountability from the elections to the inaugural speeches, and a more serious one from the inaugural speeches to the DPEFR. A series of ANOVA tests suggests that the Region's relative economic position/dependency on transfers from the central governments partly explains such loss of accountability.
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- Francesco Lagona & Fabio Padovano, 2008. "The political legislation cycle," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 134(3), pages 201-229, March.
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