Electoral Contributions and the Cost of Unpopularity

21 Pages Posted: 28 Aug 2017

See all articles by Thomas Bassetti

Thomas Bassetti

University of Padua - Department of Economics

Filippo Pavesi

Università Carlo Cattaneo (LIUC) - Institute of Economics; Stevens Institute of Technology - School of Business

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 2017

Abstract

When considering electoral campaigns, candidates receiving contributions from relatively unpopular industries should be regarded less favorably by voters that have information on the sources of funding. To offset this unpopularity effect, politicians may either demand more money for campaign advertising from these industries in order to persuade less informed voters, or shy away from unpopular contributors to avoid losing the support of the informed electorate. Our model predicts that the first effect dominates, and electoral contributions are increasing in industry unpopularity. By using U.S. House elections data and different identification strategies, we provide robust evidence in favor of our predictions.

JEL Classification: D72, P16

Suggested Citation

Bassetti, Thomas and Pavesi, Filippo, Electoral Contributions and the Cost of Unpopularity (October 2017). Economic Inquiry, Vol. 55, Issue 4, pp. 1771-1791, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3026761 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecin.12461

Thomas Bassetti (Contact Author)

University of Padua - Department of Economics ( email )

via Del Santo 33
Padova, 35123
Italy

Filippo Pavesi

Università Carlo Cattaneo (LIUC) - Institute of Economics ( email )

21053 Castellanza (VA)
Italy

Stevens Institute of Technology - School of Business ( email )

Hoboken, NJ 07030
United States

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