Questions to be Answered

  • Robert E. McCormick
  • Robert D. Tollison
Part of the Rochester Studies in Economics and Policy Issues book series (RSEP, volume 3)


The interest-group theory of government is based upon the premise that a major portion of governmental activity is devoted to the transfer of resources among citizens. Some citizens are net winners in this process and some are net losers. Moreover, the wealth-transfer process is not a simple process in which well-organized and wealthy producers increase their wealth through legislation at the expense of widely dispersed and poorly organized consumers. The more generally correct characterization of the wealth-transfer process does not pit consumers against producers but allows each economic unit to seek transfers from the other units in the economy-polity. Our primary interest in this process will be to analyze the role of the political representative in brokering transfers among the various groups in a society.


Demand Curve Political Competition Wealth Transfer Real Resource Political Representative 
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  1. See Gordon Tullock, “Entry Barriers in Politics,” American Economic Review 55 (May 1967): 458–66.Google Scholar
  2. George J. Stigler (“The Sizes of Legislatures,” Journal of Legal Studies 5 [January 1976]: 17–34)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. George J. Stigler, “Free Riders and Collective Action: An Appendix to Theories of Economic Regulation,” Bell Journal of Economics and Management Science 5 (Autumn 1974 ): 359–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© University of Rochester Center for Research in Government Policy and Business 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert E. McCormick
    • 1
  • Robert D. Tollison
    • 2
  1. 1.Graduate School of ManagementUniversity of RochesterUSA
  2. 2.Center for Study of Public ChoiceVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityUSA

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