Party Governance and Political Competition with an Application to the American Direct Primacy

36 Pages Posted: 26 May 2005

See all articles by Micael Castanheira

Micael Castanheira

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Benoit Crutzen

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Economics

Nicolas Sahuguet

HEC Montreal - Institute of Applied Economics

Date Written: February 2005

Abstract

We analyze how the governance structure of political parties influences electoral competition. Parties choose their organization to manipulate the incentives of politicians to provide effort. We show that intra- and inter-party competition interact to shape these incentives. We also get new insights on the role of information, polarization, and on the value of rents from office. More extreme parties tend to prefer less democratic governance structures. Instead, democratic structures are preferred when voters are ill-informed about the candidates' performance and when the rents from office are low. We use our theory to interpret the introduction of the Direct Primary system in the USA at the beginning of the 20th century.

Keywords: Parties, candidates, internal organization, incentives

JEL Classification: D23, D72, D81

Suggested Citation

Castanheira, Micael and Crutzen, Benoit and Sahuguet, Nicolas, Party Governance and Political Competition with an Application to the American Direct Primacy (February 2005). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=729934

Micael Castanheira (Contact Author)

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - European Center for Advanced Research in Economics and Statistics (ECARES) ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
Brussels, B-1050
Belgium
+32 2 650 4467 (Phone)
+32 2 650 3369 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Benoit Crutzen

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Economics ( email )

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

HOME PAGE: http://people.few.eur.nl/crutzen/

Nicolas Sahuguet

HEC Montreal - Institute of Applied Economics ( email )

3000, ch. de la Côte-Ste-Catherine
Montréal, Quebec H3T 2A7
Canada

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