Carlos Pereira
Getulio Vargas Foundation, Rio de Janeiro



(Friday, 19th May 2023)

Title : Fighting Corruption: Impunity vs Coordination

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Checks and balance institutions (Judiciary, public prosecutors, audit courts etc.) have imposed huge political and judicial loses to several corrupt political elites in Latin America. Considering the huge political polarization in the region, the role of ideology on the approval of coordinated action by controlling institutions has important consequences for the fight against corruption. Voters evaluate the benefits of coordination as outweighing their costs, even if such actions weaken defendants’ rights. Voters’ engagement, in fact, depends on congruency with the court decision. Preliminary results of this research agenda suggest that If the court convicts the voter’s rejected candidate, confidence in the court’s decision increases. However, if the court convicts voters’ preferred candidates, the willingness to oppose corruption vanishes, and the political persecution argument emerges. Voters did not manifest any inclination to leave their preferred candidate behind in the quest to punish corruption. That is, voter’s perception of coordinated initiatives by accountability actors may not be free from ideological bias.