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American Economic Journal: Economic Policy: Vol. 3 No. 3 (August 2011)

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Electoral Rules and Politicians' Behavior: A Micro Test

Article Citation

Gagliarducci, Stefano, Tommaso Nannicini, and Paolo Naticchioni. 2011. "Electoral Rules and Politicians' Behavior: A Micro Test." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 3(3): 144-74.

DOI: 10.1257/pol.3.3.144

Abstract

Theory predicts that the majoritarian electoral system should produce more targeted redistribution and lower rents than proportional representation. We test these predictions using data on the Italian House of Representatives, and address the nonrandom selection into different systems exploiting one feature of the two-tier elections between 1994-2001: candidates could run for both the majoritarian and proportional tier, but if they won in both they had to accept the majoritarian seat. Focusing on elections decided by a narrow margin, we find that majoritarian representatives put forward more bills targeted at their constituency and show lower absenteeism rates than their proportional colleagues. (JEL D72)

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Authors

Gagliarducci, Stefano (U Rome "Tor Vergata")
Nannicini, Tommaso (Bocconi U)
Naticchioni, Paolo (U Cassino)

JEL Classifications

D72: Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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