Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-684899dbb8-vtfg7 Total loading time: 0.3 Render date: 2022-05-27T00:20:40.942Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true }

Trade and redistribution: trade politics and the origins of progressive taxation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 October 2019

Lucy Barnes*
Affiliation:
School of Public Policy, University College London, London, UK
*
*Corresponding author. E-mail: l.barnes@ucl.ac.uk

Abstract

What explains variation in tax progressivity before World War I? I argue that trade politics shaped the emergence of progressive taxation. If labor could provide a useful ally, trade policy coalitions meant compromise on redistributive demands: progressive taxes, especially where inequality was lower. In time-series cross-sectional analysis, I find that trade interest proximity between labor and elites was associated with more progressive taxation in ten European countries between 1870 and 1913 under conditions of low inequality. The coalition and compromise mechanism is evident in sub-national evidence from Britain. Where constituency interests favored free trade, Liberal–Labour electoral alliance was more likely in 1906, and the local MP was more likely to support the 1909 “People's Budget” for progressive taxation.

Type
Original Articles
Copyright
Copyright © The European Political Science Association 2019

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Acemoglu, D and Robinson, J (2005) Economic Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy. New York: Cambridge University Press.10.1017/CBO9780511510809CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Acemoglu, D, Naidu, S, Restrepo, P and Robinson, JA (2015) Democracy, Redistribution, and Inequality. In Atkinson, AB and Bourguignon, F (eds), Handbook of Income Distribution, vol. 2 of Handbook of Income Distribution. New York: Elsevier, pp. 18851966.Google Scholar
Adserà, A and Boix, C (2002) Trade, democracy and the size of the public sector: the political underpinnings of openness. International Organization 56, 229262.10.1162/002081802320005478CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Aidt, TS and Jensen, PS (2009) Tax structure, size of government and the extension of the voting franchise in Western Europe, 1860–1938. International Tax and Public Finance 16, 362394.10.1007/s10797-008-9069-9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ansell, BW and Samuels, DJ (2010) Inequality and democratization: a contractarian approach. Comparative Political Studies 43, 15431574.10.1177/0010414010376915CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ansell, BW and Samuels, DJ (2014) Inequality and Democratization: An Elite-Competition Approach. New York: Cambridge University Press.10.1017/CBO9780511843686CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bairoch, P (1982) International Industrialization Levels From 1750 to 1980. Journal of European Economic History 11, 269333.Google Scholar
Barnes, L (2018) The Politics of Domestic Taxation. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics. pp. 124Google Scholar
Bealey, F and Pelling, P (1958) Labour and Politics 1900–1906: A History of the Labour Representation Committee. London, UK: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Beck, N and Katz, JN (1995) What to do (and not to do) with time-series cross-section data. American Political Science Review 89, 634647.10.2307/2082979CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Beramendi, P, Dinecco, M and Rogers, M (2019) Intra-elite competition and long-run fiscal development. Journal of Politics 81, 4965.10.1086/700273CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bignon, V and García-Peñalosa, C Protectionism and the education-Fertility Trade-Off in late 19th Century France, Marseilles School of Economics Working Paper Series, 2016. accessed 18 January 2015.Google Scholar
Comin, D and Hobijn, B (2009) Cross-Country Adoption of Technology Database. Available at http://www.nber.org/data/chat.dta. accessed January 2012.Google Scholar
Cusack, T and Beramendi, P (2006) Taxing work. European Journal of Political Research 45, 4375.10.1111/j.1475-6765.2005.00290.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Daunton, M (2001) Trusting Leviathan: The Politics of Taxation in Britain, 1799–1914. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Finseraas, H (2010) What if Robin Hood is a social conservative? How the political response to increasing inequality depends on party polarization. Socioeconomic Review 8, 283306.10.1093/ser/mwp012CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ganghof, S (2006) Tax mixes and the size of the welfare state: causal mechanisms and policy implications. Journal of European Social Policy 15, 360373.10.1177/0958928706068274CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goertz, G (2017) Multimethod Research, Causal Mechanisms, and Case Studies: An Integrated Approach. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Gomes, L (1990) The Tariff Reform Debate (1903). In Neoclassical International Economics. London: Palgrave Macmillan.10.1057/9780230371552CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gourevitch, PA (1977) International trade, domestic Coalitions, and liberty: comparative responses to the crisis of 1873–1896. The Journal of Interdisciplinary History 8, 281313.10.2307/202790CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hiscox, MJ (2002) International Trade and Political Conflict: Commerce, Coalitions, and Mobility. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Howe, A (1997) Free Trade and Liberal England 1846–1946. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
Huber, E and Stephens, JD (2012) Democracy and the Left: Social Policy and Inequality in Latin America. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.10.7208/chicago/9780226356556.001.0001CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Irwin, DA (1994) The political economy of free trade: voting in the British General Election of 1906. Journal of Law and Economics 37, 75108.10.1086/467307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kollman, K, Hicken, A, Caramani, D, Backer, D and Lublin, D (2016) Constituency-Level Elections Archive [Data File And Codebook]. Ann Arbor: Center for Political Studies, University of Michigan [producer and distributor].Google Scholar
Leamer, E (1980) The Leontief paradox, reconsidered. Journal of Political Economy 88, 495503.10.1086/260882CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mares, I and Queralt, D (2015) The non-democratic origins of income taxation. Comparative Political Studies 48, 19742009.10.1177/0010414015592646CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mehrotra, AK (2004) “More mighty than the Waves of the Sea”: toilers, tariffs, and the income tax movement, 1880–1913. Labor History 45, 165198.10.1080/0023656042000217246CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Murray, BK (1973) The politics of the people's budget. The Historical Journal 16, 555570.10.1017/S0018246X00002946CrossRefGoogle Scholar
O'Rourke, KH (1997) The European grain invasion. Journal of Economic History 57, 775801.10.1017/S0022050700019537CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pelling, H (1967) Social Geography of British Elections, 1885–1910. London: Macmillan.10.1007/978-1-349-00301-3CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Prasad, M and Deng, YY (2009) Taxation and worlds of welfare. Socioeconomic Review 7, 431457.10.1093/ser/mwp005CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Roemer, JE (1998) Why the poor do not expropriate the rich: an old argument in New Garb. Journal of Public Economics 70, 399424.10.1016/S0047-2727(98)00042-5CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rogowski, R (1987) Political cleavages and changing exposure to trade. The American Political Science Review 81, 11211137.10.2307/1962581CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rogowski, R (1989) Commerce and Coalitions: How Trade Affects Domestic Political Alignments. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Scheve, K and Stasavage, D (2016) Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe. Princeton: Russell Sage and Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Verbist, G and Figari, F (2014) What Makes Personal Income Taxes Progressive? A Decomposition Across European Countries Using Euromod. Paper Prepared for the IARIW 33rd General Conference.Google Scholar
Whitaker, J (1907) An Almanack for the Year of Our Lord 1907. London: J. Whitaker.Google Scholar
Ziblatt, D (2008) Does Landholding inequality block democratization? A test of the “bread and democracy” thesis and the case of Prussia. World Politics 60, 610641.10.1353/wp.0.0021CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Supplementary material: Link

Barnes Dataset

Link
Supplementary material: PDF

Barnes supplementary material

Barnes supplementary material

Download Barnes supplementary material(PDF)
PDF 571 KB
1
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Trade and redistribution: trade politics and the origins of progressive taxation
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Trade and redistribution: trade politics and the origins of progressive taxation
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Trade and redistribution: trade politics and the origins of progressive taxation
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *