Public Choice

, Volume 139, Issue 3–4, pp 429–441 | Cite as

Does trading votes in national elections change election outcomes?

  • Frank Daumann
  • Alfred Wassermann


Although forbidden in democratic states a market for votes could improve efficiency. This paper examines the way trading votes will change the outcome of an election. A two-party model with two phases is presented. In the pre-trading phase the two parties set their agendas consisting of a direct subsidy and an income tax. In the trading phase voters buy and sell votes. On the basis of rational voter behavior and a given income distribution, it is shown that the outcome of the election depends mainly on how the selling voters are distributed among the voters.


Voting Market for votes Personal tax Personal subsidies 

JEL Classification

D40 D72 H24 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social and Behavioral SciencesFriedrich-Schiller-University JenaJenaGermany
  2. 2.Mathematical DepartmentUniversity of BayreuthBayreuthGermany

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