Political behavior and voting for tax incentives

Mark F. Owens, Adam D. Rennhoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study looks at the factors which influence state legislators’ votes on movie production tax incentives. It investigates the relationship between votes cast by state legislators for/against movie production subsidies with respect to election results, political party, political donations, and district geographic and economic characteristics. Votes depend on incentives offered by neighbouring states, political affiliation, margin of election victory, and district unemployment. The number of movies filmed in the district prior to legislative action or political contributions to legislators from movie industry donors are not important vote determinants on this issue. Districts that voted for incentives appear to receive a greater increase in post-legislation film production than those that voted against legislation. Using statewide ballot initiatives to measure voter preferences, the data indicates that legislator votes on movie tax incentives reflect the underlying beliefs of their districts and is consistent with the median voter theorem.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalApplied Economics
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics and Econometrics

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