How the left prospers from prosperity
European Journal of Political Economy 24 (2), 2008, pages 329-342
This paper investigates the relationship between fluctuations in economic growth, unemployment, and voting along a left-right axis. I estimate a model that explains how political fluctuations are caused by economic fluctuations in the OECD countries. I find that higher economic growth causes a shift to the left of policy sentiments. I hold the provision of social insurance by the welfare state to be the key to understanding this relationship. I also find that the relationship changes over the sample period. I hold the tax increase needed to finance the expansion of the welfare state to be the reason for this.