Lost in Transition? The Persistence of Dictatorship Mayors

56 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2019 Last revised: 10 Aug 2020

See all articles by Felipe González

Felipe González

Pontifical Catholic University of Chile - Institute of Economics

Pablo Munoz

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Economics

Mounu Prem

Universidad del Rosario

Date Written: August 7, 2020

Abstract

We look at Chile’s transition to democracy in 1990 to study the persistence of authoritarian politics at the local level. Using new data on the universe of mayors appointed by the Pinochet dictatorship (1973-1989), and leveraging on the arbitrary election rules that characterized the first local election in 1992, we present two main findings. First, dictatorship mayors obtained a vote premium that is larger among the last wave of incumbents and appears partially explained by an increase in local spending. Second, dictatorship mayors who were democratically elected in 1992 brought votes for the parties that collaborated with the dictatorship in subsequent elections held in democracy. These results suggest that the body of politicians appointed by a dictatorship contribute to the persistence of elites and institutions.

Keywords: politicians, dictatorship, democratic transition

JEL Classification: D2, G2, G3, M2

Suggested Citation

González, Felipe and Munoz, Pablo and Prem, Mounu, Lost in Transition? The Persistence of Dictatorship Mayors (August 7, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3456949 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3456949

Felipe González

Pontifical Catholic University of Chile - Institute of Economics ( email )

Casilla 76
Correo 17
Santiago
Chile

Pablo Munoz

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Economics ( email )

579 Evans Hall
Berkeley, CA 94709
United States

Mounu Prem (Contact Author)

Universidad del Rosario ( email )

Casa Pedro Fermín
Calle 14 # 4-69
Bogota
Colombia

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