Do Far-Right Mayors Increase the Probability of Hate Crimes? Evidence From Italy
34 Pages Posted: 10 Jan 2020
Date Written: December 19, 2019
I investigate whether the mayor's political ideology impact the likelihood that a hate crime occur in the Italian municipalities. I assemble a dataset of local elections from 2008 to 2018 and I focus on those won or lost with a small margin of victory by a far-right candidate. Preliminary results show that in municipalities where an extreme-right mayor is in power, the likelihood of a hate crime occurring is significantly higher: depending on the margin of victory considered, estimates indicate an increase in the yearly probability of a hate crime ranging from 4.3 to 5.3 percentage points. The effect of the far-right mayors on hate crimes is particularly strong in the first years of their mandate and persists if the most serious acts (physical assaults) are considered; additionally, the results are largest in municipalities where low-educated people live and with a small share of immigrants.
Keywords: hate crimes, local politicians, close elections
JEL Classification: J15, J17, D15
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation