François Facchini attended annual meeting of the European Public Choice Society, hosted by the University of Freiburg (Germany) on March 30th – April 2nd 2016. He presented his paper “Poker bluff: electoral promises and the composition of government spending“, written in collaboration with Giuseppe Lucio Gaeta and Benjamin Michallet.
In this paper we investigate whether political commitments included in political parties’ electoral manifestos do translate into public spending once these parties are elected. The empirical analysis covers 26 European countries over the 1995-2012 time span; our panel estimates do employ yearly government expenditure by functiondata as dependent variable and on data on parties’ concern for specific topics (such as welfare , national defence, etc.) provided by the Comparative Manifesto database. Our insights have important implications in understanding political parties’ behavior and public policies elaboration process.