Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/174949
Authors: 
Drago, Francesco
Galbiati, Roberto
Sobbrio, Francesco
Year of Publication: 
2017
Series/Report no.: 
CESifo Working Paper 6826
Abstract: 
We study voters’ response to public policies. We exploit a natural experiment arising from the Italian 2006 collective pardon that created idiosyncratic incentives to recidivate across released individuals and municipalities. We show that municipalities where resident pardoned individuals had a higher incentive to recidivate experienced a higher recidivism rate. Moreover, in these municipalities: i) newspapers were more likely to report crime news involving pardoned individuals; ii) voters held worse beliefs on the incumbent national government’s ability to control crime and iii) with respect to the previous elections, the incumbent national government experienced a worse electoral performance in the April 2008 elections relative to the opposition coalition. Our findings indicate that voters keep politicians accountable by conditioning their vote on the observed effects of their policies.
Subjects: 
accountability
retrospective voting
natural experiment
crime
recidivism
media
JEL: 
D72
K42
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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