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Instant Winners: Legal Change in Transition and the Diffusion of State Lotteries.

  • Economics
  • Law
  • Political Science


This paper investigates the determinants of legal change in a public choice framework. An empirical model explaining the timing and probability of decisions to adopt state-operated lotteries is developed. Employing a Tobit estimator and explicitly considering the effects of state-specific constitutional and political structures, spending and tax policies, and federal revenue importation, evidence is presented showing that legal change is much like economic change: lotteries are more likely to be adopted and to be adopted earlier where the costs are lowest relative to expected benefit. State legislatures appear to be the main beneficiaries of this public choice process. Copyright 1994 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

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