Representation and policy responsiveness: The median voter, election rules, and redistributive welfare spending

  • Kang S
  • Powell G
  • 68


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 31


    Citations of this article.


Many economic and social conditions shape public welfare spending. We are able to show, however, that after taking account of these conditions, the expressed left-right preferences of the median voters significantly affect comparative welfare spending. These new findings support the representational claims of liberal democracy and the theoretical expectations of the literature on ideological congruence. However, we also show that insofar as the preferences of citizens and the promises of governing parties (which are highly correlated,) can be disentangled, it is the former that affect the long-term redistributive welfare spending equilibrium, while the latter have small, but significant short-term effects. Surprisingly, despite greater representational correspondence between positions of voters and governments under PR than SMD, the impact of the median voter preferences is quite similar under the two systems. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Copyright of Journal of Politics is the property of Cambridge University Press and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document


  • Shin Goo Kang

  • G. Bingham Powell

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free