The Effects of Campaign Spending in House Elections: New Evidence for Old Argument

Posted: 8 Jul 2008

See all articles by Gary C. Jacobson

Gary C. Jacobson

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Department of Political Science

Date Written: May 1990

Abstract

The question of how campaign spending affects election results remains open because the simultaneity problem has proven so intractable. Green and Krasno's (1988) recent attempt to solve the problem - and to demonstrate that marginal returns on spending are as great for incumbents as for challengers - again comes up short. A panel feature of the ABC News/Washington Post Congressional District Poll conducted during the 1986 elections offers a fresh perspective on the question. Analysis of changes in voting intentions during the final six weeks of the campaign shows that, as the tainted OLS studies have invariably suggested, the amount spent by the challenger is far more important in accounting for voter's decisions than is the amount spent by the incumbent.

Suggested Citation

Jacobson, Gary C., The Effects of Campaign Spending in House Elections: New Evidence for Old Argument (May 1990). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1156967

Gary C. Jacobson (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Department of Political Science ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Code 0521
La Jolla, CA 92093-0521
United States
858-534-4295 (Phone)

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