Presentation Title
Bureaucratic Capacity and Class Voting: Evidence from Across the World and the United States
Organization
Columbia University
Start Date
04-16-2018
Start Time
12:00
End Time
1:30
Location
Gibson 296
Details

Kimuli Kasara & Pavithra Suryanarayan

Abstract
Why do the rich and poor vote for different parties in some places and not others? We argue that voting along class lines is more likely to occur where states can tax the income and assets of the wealthy. In low bureaucratic capacity states, the rich are less likely to participate in electoral politics because they have less to fear from redistributive policy. When wealthy citizens abstain from voting, politicians cannot credibly campaign on anti-tax platforms,  leading  partisan preferences to converge across income groups. Using cross-national survey data, we show that there is more class voting in countries with greater fiscal capacity. We also explore subnational voting in the United States in the mid-1930s, when local revenue collection and party systems were less dependent on national economic policy. Across the  U.S., we observe more  classvoting in states with higher fiscal capacity.
Bio
Kimuli Kasara is an associate professor of political science at
Columbia University. In the African context, her work focuses on
ethnic demography, political violence, and distributive politics. She
has  published in the American Political Science Review, the American
Journal of Political Science,  and the Journal of Politics.
Photo by Mara Lavitt
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