Carolin Holzmann, Orlando Zaddach

Legend of the Pork Barrel? The Causal Effect of Legislature Size on Public Spending

Section: Articles
FinanzArchiv (FA)

Volume 75 () / Issue 1, pp. 39-58 (20)

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This paper investigates pork-barrel spending, the inefficient effect of legislature size on public spending, in at-large electoral systems. Using a rich panel-data set on German municipalities whose councils are elected at large, we employ a regression discontinuity design to estimate the causal effect of legislature size of public spending. The empirical results indicate that the pork-barrel effect in at-large electoral systems is of very small economic magnitude. This finding is in line with the theoretical prediction of a zero effect, but is in sharp contrast to previously published estimates in the literature that commonly support a positive pork-barrel spending effect.

Carolin Holzmann No current data available.

Orlando Zaddach No current data available.