The Political Economy of Government Size

24 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2004

See all articles by George Tridimas

George Tridimas

University of Ulster - School of Economics

Stanley L. Winer

Carleton University - School of Public Policy and Administration; Carleton University - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Abstract

We contribute to the political economy of public sector growth by integrating the analysis of three factors: (i) the 'demand' for government, stemming from attempts to coercively redistribute as well as from the ordinary demand for public services, often analyzed in a median voter framework; (ii) the 'supply' of taxable activities emphasized in Leviathan and other models of taxation; and (iii) the distribution of 'political influence' when influence and economic welfare are distinct. The first two factors have been considered in recent empirical papers by Ferris and West (1996) and Kau and Rubin (2002). The role of unequal influence has been investigated empirically by Mueller and Stratmann (2003). We combine all three elements in a spatial voting framework, and use the comparative static properties of the integrative model to shed light on the theoretical and empirical literature.

Keywords: Size of government, coercive redistribution, political influence, probabilistic spatial voting

JEL Classification: D70, H0, H3

Suggested Citation

Tridimas, George and Winer, Stanley L., The Political Economy of Government Size. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=598966

George Tridimas (Contact Author)

University of Ulster - School of Economics ( email )

Shore Road
Newtownabbey
Co Antrim, Northern Ireland BT37 0QB BT37 0QB
United Kingdom

Stanley L. Winer

Carleton University - School of Public Policy and Administration ( email )

1125 Colonel By Drive
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 5B6
Canada
613-520-2600 x2630 (Phone)
613-520-2551 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.carleton.ca/winer

Carleton University - Department of Economics ( email )

1125 Colonel By Drive
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 5B6
Canada
613-520-2600 ex.2630 (Phone)
613-520-2551 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.carleton.ca/winer

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

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