Who Will Vote Quadratically? Voter Turnout and Votes Cast Under Quadratic Voting
Harvard Law School John M. Olin Center Discussion Paper No. 894
30 Pages Posted: 5 Dec 2016
Date Written: December 2, 2016
Who will vote quadratically in large-N elections under quadratic voting (QV)? First, who will vote? Although the core QV literature assumes that everyone votes, turnout is endogenous. Drawing on other work, we consider the representativeness of endogenously determined turnout under QV. Second, who will vote quadratically? Conditional on turning out, we examine reasons that, in large-N elections, the number of votes that an individual casts may deviate substantially from that under pure, rational QV equilibrium play. Because turnout itself is driven by other factors, the same determinants may influence how voters who do turn out choose the quantity of votes to cast. Independently, the number of votes actually cast may deviate dramatically from pure QV predictions because of the complex and refined nature of equilibrium play. Most plausibly, voting behavior and outcomes would be determined predominately by social and psychological forces, would thereby exhibit few of the features emphasized in the analysis of hyper-rational equilibrium play, and would have consequential properties that require a different research agenda to bring into focus. Some of our analysis also has implications for voting behavior under other procedures, including one person, one vote.
Keywords: Voting; voter turnout; paradox of voting; quadratic voting; pivotality; elections
JEL Classification: D71, D72, D82
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation