One way of fighting corruption

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In 2003, the Brazilian government began to randomly audit municipalities regarding their use of federal funds and made the results public. A recent study compares municipalities audited before the 2004 municipal elections with those audited after the elections.

The authors find that municipalities audited after the elections have the same reelection rate for incumbents, regardless of the number of violations found. However, the municipalities audited before the elections have a much lower reelection rate when the incumbent was found to have more than one violation.

Public dissemination of the violations seems to be critical. The differences in reelection rates are only present in municipalities that have a local radio station.

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