National Bureau of Economic Research (2009), working paper n. 15365
Autori: Alan S. Gerber, Gregory A. Huber, Ebonya Washington
Political partisanship is strongly correlated with attitudes and behavior, but it is unclear from this pattern whether partisan identity has a causal effect on political behavior and attitudes. We report the results of a field experiment designed to investigate the causal effect of party identification. Prior to the February 2008 Connecticut presidential primary, researchers sent a mailing to a random sample of unaffiliated registered voters informing them of the need to register in order to participate in the upcoming primary. Comparing post-treatment survey...
American Journal of Political Science (April 2011), Vol. 55, N. 2, pp. 340-355
Autori: John T. Gasper, Andrew Reeves
Are election outcomes driven by events beyond the control of politicians? Democratic accountability requires that voters make reasonable evaluations of incumbents. Although natural disasters are beyond human control, the response to these events is the responsibility of elected officials. In a county-level analysis of gubernatorial and presidential elections from 1970 to 2006, we examine the effects of weather events and governmental responses. We find that electorates punish presidents and governors for severe weather damage. However, we find that these effects are dwarfed...
A large body of research has claimed that budget making by multiparty governments constitutes a “common pool resource” (CPR) problem that leads them to engage in higher levels of spending than single-party governments and, further, that this upwards fiscal pressure increases with the number of parties in the coalition. We offer a significant modification of the conventional wisdom. Drawing on recent developments in the literature on coalition governance, as well as research on fiscal institutions, we argue that budgetary rules can mitigate the CPR logic provided that they (1) reduce the influence of individual parties in the budget process and (2) generate endogenous incentives to resist spending demands by coalition partners. Our empirical evaluation, based on spending patterns in 15 European democracies over nearly 40 years, provides clear support for this contention. Restrictive budgetary procedures can eliminate the expansionary fiscal pressures associated with growing coalition size. Our conclusions suggest that there is room for addressing contemporary concerns over the size of the public sector in multiparty democracies through appropriate reforms to fiscal institutions, and they also have implications for debates about the merits of “proportional” and “majoritarian” models of democracy that are, at least in part, characterized by the difference between coalition and single-party governance.