Why do voters – including the poor – elect super-rich business candidates into power? In the age of anti-elite political populism, the support of tycoons by people in countries as diverse as the United States, Benin, and Ukraine suggests a puzzle. To address this puzzle, we marshal evidence from a survey experiment in South Africa, a country where wealthy business people are heavily engaged in politics. Theoretically, we extend the literatures on inequality and voting behavior by testing a number of competing explanations for the voter support of "tycoon candidates." Relative to voter appeals based on competence signaling, name recognition, and framing, it is the clientelistic appeals which benefit tycoon candidates the most. We suggest extensions to the literature on clientelism based on these findings.
|Publication date||Aug 2018|
|Number of pages||25|
|Publication status||Published - Aug 2018|
|Event||American Political Science Association, APSA Annual Meeting 2018: Democracy and its Discontents - Boston, United States|
Duration: 30 Aug 2018 → 2 Sep 2018
Conference number: 114
|Conference||American Political Science Association, APSA Annual Meeting 2018|
|Period||30/08/2018 → 02/09/2018|
Bibliographical noteCBS Library does not have access to the material
Justesen, M. K., & Markus, S. (2018). Electoral Underpinnings of Oligarchy: A Survey Experiment in South Africa. Paper presented at American Political Science Association, APSA Annual Meeting 2018, Boston, United States.