Interest groups, campaign contributions, and probabilistic voting

David Austen-Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

197 Scopus citations


This essay develops a simple model to analyze the impact of campaign contributions on electoral-policy decisions of candidates for office. Interest groups here are firms that select contributions under the assumption that candidates' policies and opposing groups' donations remain unaltered. Candidates, however, recognize that their policy choices affect contributions. Campaign contributions are used by candidates to affect policy-oriented voters' perceptions of candidates' positions. In this framework the introduction of campaign contributions may affect candidates' electoral policies, and if they do then they benefit surely exactly one of the two interest groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)123-139
Number of pages17
JournalPublic Choice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics


Dive into the research topics of 'Interest groups, campaign contributions, and probabilistic voting'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this