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Money talks: deterring quality challengers in congressional elections

Author: Zemsky, Peter B. ; Epstein, DavidINSEAD Area: StrategyIn: American Political Science Review, vol. 89, no. 2, June 1995 Language: EnglishDescription: p. 295-308.Type of document: INSEAD ArticleNote: Please ask us for this itemAbstract: We examine the role of incumbent fundraising in deterring strong challegers. We construct a signaling model in which incumbents can use fundraising strategically to ward off quality challengers. We show, however, that only under very limited circumstances will there be an observable relationship between fundraising and challenger quality. Therefore, previous empirical tests for deterrence have systematically underestimated the effects of fundraising in decreasing electoral competition. Our analysis also suggests that by making fundraising easily observable, Federal Election Commission regulations may encourage candidates to overinvest time and resources accumulating large war chests instead of governing
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We examine the role of incumbent fundraising in deterring strong challegers. We construct a signaling model in which incumbents can use fundraising strategically to ward off quality challengers. We show, however, that only under very limited circumstances will there be an observable relationship between fundraising and challenger quality. Therefore, previous empirical tests for deterrence have systematically underestimated the effects of fundraising in decreasing electoral competition. Our analysis also suggests that by making fundraising easily observable, Federal Election Commission regulations may encourage candidates to overinvest time and resources accumulating large war chests instead of governing

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