Has the War Between the Rent Seekers Escalated?

In The War between the Rent Seekers, Richard Vedder and Lowell Gallaway develop and test a unique theory about the interactions between rent-seeking interest groups. In the conclusion of their article, they make a bold prediction about the future: “If state and local spending continues its relative growth, we would expect the war between rent seekers to spread to other jurisdictions.” By this they meant more states entering the backward-bending portion of their hypothesized Laffer-type relationship. Our results strongly suggest they were right. The number of states where rent seekers are now at war has approximately doubled, from five to nine, with two more states nearing the threshold.

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