Not Welcome Anymore: The Effect of Electoral Incentives on the Reception of Refugees
65 Pages Posted: 13 Sep 2017 Last revised: 3 Nov 2021
Date Written: November 2, 2021
Do electoral incentives affect immigration policies? Our model shows that politicians manipulate immigration policies for electoral reasons, and their behavior depends on the share of anti-immigrant voters and the level of electoral competition. Exploiting the Italian system for refugees' reception, we empirically show that electoral incentives reduce the probability of bidding for a refugee center by 24%, despite the economic benefits arising from these centers. High shares of extreme-right voters and low levels of electoral competition drive the effect. The results explain why it is difficult to reach an equal redistribution of refugees across and within countries.
Keywords: Migration, reception of refugees, electoral incentives, fiscal grants
JEL Classification: R23, J61, D72, C23
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation