[Journal:] SERIEs - Journal of the Spanish Economic Association [ISSN:] 1869-4195 [Volume:] 7 [Year:] 2016 [Issue:] 3 [Pages:] 307-339
We model an election between two Downsian mainstream candidates and a third inflexible politician. There is uncertainty about the state of the world. Candidates receive signals on the state and propose a policy to implement. There are two classes of voters: ideological, who are biased towards the policy proposed by the third candidate; and non-ideological, who want the policy implemented to correspond to the state of the world. We study two cases: (1) one in which the third candidate supports the most popular policy (in terms of the electorate's prior); (2) another one in which he supports the less popular policy. We obtain that the presence of a third candidate facilitates equilibria in which the two mainstream politicians make informative announcements, specially when the third candidate is biased towards the most popular policy. We also obtain that many of the informative equilibria are sustained by a coalition government, however the coalition is never between the two mainstream candidates. Last, we observe that in equilibrium, the third inflexible candidate has significant chances of winning office.
Electoral competition Heterogeneous voters Information transmission Voting Coalition governments