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Political Confederation

Crémer, Jacques and Palfrey, Thomas R. (1999) Political Confederation. American Political Science Review, 93 (1). pp. 69-83. ISSN 0003-0554. doi:10.2307/2585761.

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This article extends the spatial model of voting to study the implications of different institutional structures of federalism along two dimensions: degree of centralization and mode of representation. The representation dimension varies the weight between unit representation (one state, one vote) and population-proportional representation (one person, one vote). Voters have incomplete information and can reduce policy risk by increasing the degree of centralization or increasing the weight on unit representation. We derive induced preferences over the degree of centralization and the relative weights of the two modes of representation, and we study the properties of majority rule voting over these two basic dimensions of federalism. Moderates prefer more centralization than extremists, and voters in large states generally have different preferences from voters in small states. This implies two main axes of conflict in decisions concerning political confederation: moderates versus extremists and large versus small states.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription ItemWorking Paper
Palfrey, Thomas R.0000-0003-0769-8109
Additional Information:© 1999 American Political Science Association. This research was supported in part by the NationalScience Foundation through grants SES-9224787 and SBR-9631627. The work was begun while Palfrey was visiting Université de Toulouse in 1995. Its financial support, as well as its stimulating research environment, is gratefully acknowledged. Palfrey also thanks CREST-LEI and CERAS for their hospitality and research support during the 1995-96 academic year. We are grateful for comments from R. Michael Alvarez, Jonathan Katz, and seminar participants at London School of Economics, Université de Toulouse, the 1996 Gerzensee Workshop on Political Economy, the 1997 SITE summer program on Interregional Competition in Public economics, the 1997 annual meeting of the Public Choice Society, and the referees.
Group:Social Science Working Papers
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Université de ToulouseUNSPECIFIED
Centre de Recherche en Economie et STatistique (CREST)UNSPECIFIED
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Social Science Working Paper990
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160307-165058131
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Official Citation:Jacques Crémer and Thomas R. Palfrey (1999). Political Confederation . American Political Science Review, 93, pp 69-83. doi:10.2307/2585761.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:65166
Deposited On:18 Mar 2016 20:59
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 23:41

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