Are corrupt politicians in Brazil punished at the ballot box? To answer this question I will take a look at the 2006 Brazilian congressional elections and use the results to compare it to previous research on U.S. congressional elections. I argue that, as in the case of U.S. incumbents accused of corruption, Brazilian members of Congress will also lose a substantial number of votes, in the face of corruption allegations. Indeed, contrary to the U.S., most will lose their seat because they cannot afford any vote loss given the Brazilian electoral system. I will also argue that access to information is a key element in determining if voters punish corrupt politicians, especially in the Brazilian political environment, and that Brazilian election rules will make campaign spending a key element for re-election.
Thesis (M.A.)--University of Kansas, Political Science, 2007.