Voter Turnout and Income Inequality in Latin America
Keywords:voter turnout, income inequality, rational actor theory
The purpose of this paper is to gain some insight into the age-old question: Why is there income inequality at all in our modern world? I narrow this question down into a sub-question that I can investigate: what is the effect of voter turnout on income inequality? I narrow my regional focus to Latin America and add a temporal focus to the years from 2000 to present. I theorize that higher voter turnout leads to decreased income inequality. This is because, as theorized by Lijphart (1996), low voter turnout is by and large a result of the people in low economic groups’ failure to turnout to vote. Therefore, the alternate hypothesis of this thesis is that high voter turnout leads to more equal income distribution in Latin America from 2000 to present. I discover that I cannot reject my null hypothesis. There is not sufficient statistically significant evidence to believe that, based on a multivariate ordinary least squares regression analysis, increased voter turnout leads to increased income equality. This paper has implications for future researchers studying the effects of voter turnout in Latin America and for researchers interested in answering macroeconomic questions about this region.
To see the complete thesis, please visit https://scholar.colorado.edu/concern/undergraduate_honors_theses/m900nv68b.
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