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date: 12 December 2018

Abstract and Keywords

The behavior of (would-be) legislators between elections is shaped by electoral institutions. Legislators are expected to seek re-election and thus will do the things in the legislative arena that they believe voters will reward in the next election and avoid those that voters will not reward. To determine whom to vote for during elections, voters rely on a combination of party-based and candidate-based information shortcuts under different electoral institutions. The options available to voters are structured by electoral institutions, which may affect whether legislators will cultivate their personal reputation or the party reputation. This chapterexamines the ways electoral institutions affect legislative behavior. More specifically, it looks at the causal mechanism responsible for generating the incentives for voters, political parties, and individual legislators, as well as the manner in which the formal properties of the electoral institutions translate into conflicting incentives. Moreover, it discusses how individual legislators choose between the multiple behavioral repertoires that are commonly called personal vote-seeking. Finally, it describes the monitoring and sanctioning abilities of both voters and political parties.

Keywords: legislators, elections, electoral institutions, reputation, legislative behavior, incentives, personal vote-seeking, political parties

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