He who counts elects: Economic elites, political elites, and electoral fraud

Isaías Chaves, Leopoldo Fergusson*, James A. Robinson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


What determines the extent of electoral fraud? This paper constructs a model of the tradeoff between fraud and policy concessions (public good provision) which also incorporates the strength of the state. In addition, we parameterize the extent to which economic elites (to whom fraud is costly) and political elites (to whom fraud is advantageous) "overlap." The model predicts that fraud will be lower and public good provision higher when land inequality is higher, the overlap between elites lower, and the strength of the state higher. We test these predictions using a unique, municipal-level dataset from Colombia's 1922 Presidential elections. We find empirical support for all the predictions of the model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)124-159
Number of pages36
JournalEconomics and Politics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


Dive into the research topics of 'He who counts elects: Economic elites, political elites, and electoral fraud'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this