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A Replication of 'Do Voters Affect or Elect Policies? Evidence from the U.S. House' (The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2004)

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  • Patrick Button

    () (Department of Economics, Tulane University)

Abstract

I replicate Lee, Moretti, and Butler (2004) "Do Voters Affect or Elect Policies? Evidence from the US House." Quarterly Journal of Economics, 119(3), 807-59, using new advances in regression discontinuity design methodology. Specifically, I use local linear regression with optimal bandwidths (Imbens and Kalyanaraman, 2012) and I follow advice on polynomial modelling in Lee and Lemieux (2010). I also run McCrary (2008)'s density test as an additional robustness check to investigate sorting around the treatment cut-off. I investigate the sensitivity of estimates to polynomial order, bandwidth, and to the inclusion of covariates. The conclusion of Lee, Moretti, and Butler (2004) that voters "elect" rather than "affect" policies still holds under this more rigorous scrutiny.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Button, 2015. "A Replication of 'Do Voters Affect or Elect Policies? Evidence from the U.S. House' (The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2004)," Working Papers 1518, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tul:wpaper:1518
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    File URL: http://repec.tulane.edu/RePEc/pdf/tul1518.pdf
    File Function: First Version, September 2015
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Fernando Ferreira & Joseph Gyourko, 2009. "Do Political Parties Matter? Evidence from U.S. Cities," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(1), pages 399-422.
    2. David S. Lee & Thomas Lemieux, 2010. "Regression Discontinuity Designs in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(2), pages 281-355, June.
    3. David Card & Carlos Dobkin & Nicole Maestas, 2009. "Does Medicare Save Lives?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(2), pages 597-636.
    4. David S. Lee & Enrico Moretti & Matthew J. Butler, 2004. "Do Voters Affect or Elect Policies? Evidence from the U. S. House," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(3), pages 807-859.
    5. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135-135.
    6. Guido Imbens & Karthik Kalyanaraman, 2012. "Optimal Bandwidth Choice for the Regression Discontinuity Estimator," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(3), pages 933-959.
    7. Lee, David S., 2008. "Randomized experiments from non-random selection in U.S. House elections," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 675-697, February.
    8. Imbens, Guido W. & Lemieux, Thomas, 2008. "Regression discontinuity designs: A guide to practice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 615-635, February.
    9. McCrary, Justin, 2008. "Manipulation of the running variable in the regression discontinuity design: A density test," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 698-714, February.
    10. Button Patrick, 2016. "Model Uncertainty and Model Averaging in Regression Discontinuity Designs," Journal of Econometric Methods, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 103-116, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Brown, Annette N. & Wood, Benjamin Douglas Kuflick, 2017. "Which tests not witch hunts: a diagnostic approach for conducting replication research," Economics Discussion Papers 2017-77, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).

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