Political Alignment, Attitudes toward Government, and Tax Evasion
AbstractWe ask whether attitudes toward government play a causal role in the evasion of US personal income taxes. As turnover elections move voters in partisan counties into and out of alignment with the party of the president, we find with alignment (i) taxpayers report more easily evaded forms of income; (ii) suspect EITC claims decrease; and (iii) audits triggered and audits found to owe additional tax decrease. Coupled with evidence that alignment leads to more favorable views on taxation and spending, our results provide real world evidence that a positive outlook on government lowers tax evasion.
CitationCullen, Julie Berry, Nicholas Turner, and Ebonya Washington. 2021. "Political Alignment, Attitudes toward Government, and Tax Evasion." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 13 (3): 135-66. DOI: 10.1257/pol.20190409
- D72 Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- H24 Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies; includes inheritance and gift taxes
- H26 Tax Evasion and Avoidance
- H31 Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: Household