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Contest with attack and defense: does negative campaigning increase or decrease voter turnout?

Abstract : There are two ways of winning a competition, by increasing one’s own chances of winning or by decreasing those of one’s opponents. I consider a model of contest with attack and defense and propose an application to negative political campaigns, where two candidates choose between disparaging their opponent or valorizing their own image. I provide sufficient conditions for the existence and uniqueness of the symmetric Nash equilibrium of the contest game. Through this model, I then contribute to the controversy concerning the effect of negative campaigning on voter turnout.
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Submitted on : Sunday, May 31, 2020 - 1:16:25 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 22, 2022 - 11:57:20 AM

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Raphael Soubeyran. Contest with attack and defense: does negative campaigning increase or decrease voter turnout?. Social Choice and Welfare, Springer Verlag, 2009, 32 (3), pp.337-353. ⟨10.1007/s00355-008-0326-8⟩. ⟨hal-02668636⟩

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