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PACking a punch: Political Action Committees and corruption

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Political Action Committees (PACs) are unique and prominent players in American politics. Yet, formal research on some aspects of PACs is lacking. Using US data over the period 1970 to 2009, this research demonstrates that the growth in PACs is positively associated with greater corruption. A 10% increase in the number of PACs per capita would increase corruption by about 8%. Upon disaggregation, corporate PACs, rather than labour PACs, are positively associated with corruption. The effects of economic prosperity, government size and population on US corruption are generally in line with the literature.

Keywords: H7; K42; O51; Political Action Committees; United States; corruption; government

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Economics, Illinois State University, Normal, IL, 61790–4200, USA

Publication date: 2014-04-13

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