Elections, Checks and Balances, and Government Expenditures: Empirical Evidence for Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan
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Elections, Checks and Balances, and Government Expenditures: Empirical Evidence for Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan

Authors: Yuan-Hong Ho, Chiung-Ju Huang


Previous studies on political budget cycles (PBCs) implicitly assume the executive has full discretion power over fiscal policy, neglecting the role of checks and balances of the legislature. This paper goes beyond traditional PBCs models and sheds light on the case study of Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan over the 1988-2007 periods. Based on the results, we find no evidence of electoral impacts on the public expenditures in South Korean and Taiwan's congressional elections. We also noted that PBCs are found on Taiwan-s government expenditures during our sample periods. Furthermore, the results also show that Japan-s legislature has a significant checks and balances on government-s expenditures. However, empirical results show that the legislature veto player in Taiwan neither has effect on the reduction of public expenditures, nor has the moderating effect over Taiwan-s political budget cycles, albeit that they are statistically insignificant.We suggest that the existence of PBCs in Taiwan is due to a weaker systemof checks and balances. Our conjecture is that Taiwan either has no legislative veto player or has observed low compliance to the law during the time period examined in our study.

Keywords: Checks and balances, compliance to the law, political budget cycles, veto player.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1078747

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