We estimate habit formation in voting-the effect of past on current turnout-by exploiting transitory voting cost shocks. Using countylevel data on US presidential elections from 1952-2012, we find that rainfall on current and past election days reduces voter turnout. Our estimates imply that a 1-point decrease in past turnout lowers current turnout by 0.6-1.0 points. Further analyses suggest that habit formation operates by reinforcing the direct consumption value of voting and that our estimates may be amplified by social spillovers.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||29|
|Journal||American Economic Journal: Applied Economics|
|State||Published - 2016|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)