Reputation shocks and Strategic Responses in Electoral Campaigns

43 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2021 Last revised: 6 Jul 2021

See all articles by Rubén Poblete-Cazenave

Rubén Poblete-Cazenave

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Erasmus School of Economics (ESE); Tinbergen Institute

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 15, 2021

Abstract

Information affecting a candidate's reputation might have significant electoral consequences. Do candidates respond to the release of information? Using Brazilian elections and audits as an exogenous source of information, I show that both incumbent and challenger increase their campaign spending when detrimental information affects the incumbent's reputation. Conversely, beneficial information decreases candidates' spending. The main channel is that information affects the expected competitiveness of elections and, therefore, candidates' spending. Only information disclosed before electoral campaigns impacts campaign spending. Furthermore, incumbents also adapt a conditional cash transfers program by increasing (decreasing) the beneficiaries when detrimental (beneficial) reputation shocks occur.

Keywords: Information, Politicians' reaction, Campaign spending, Elections, Corruption, Accountability

JEL Classification: D72, D73, D83, P16.

Suggested Citation

Poblete-Cazenave, Rubén, Reputation shocks and Strategic Responses in Electoral Campaigns (February 15, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3786253 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3786253

Rubén Poblete-Cazenave (Contact Author)

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) ( email )

P.O. Box 1738
3000 DR Rotterdam, NL 3062 PA
Netherlands

Tinbergen Institute ( email )

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

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