Citizens or lobbies: who controls policy?
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This paper analyzes a model of electoral competition with uncertainty on the policy implemented by candidates. I show that this uncertainty can induce risk-averse voters to elect politicians whose policies are biased. I apply these results to a lobbying game, where candidates hold private information about their willingness to pander to lobbies once elected. I show that voters elect politicians who implement policies biased in favor of the lobby. Increasing the probability of non-pandering candidates can increase the effect of lobbying. The model thus demonstrates that uncertainty on the influence of special interests can lead to large effects of lobbying on policy.
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