Public Choice

, Volume 97, Issue 4, pp 617–643 | Cite as

Veto games: Spatial committees under unanimity rule

  • Yan Chen
  • Peter C. Ordeshook


There exists a large literature on two-person bargaining games and distribution games (or divide-the-dollar games) under simple majority rule, where in equilibrium a minimal winning coalition takes full advantage over everyone else. Here we extend the study to an n-person veto game where players take turns proposing policies in an n-dimensional policy space and everybody has a veto over changes in the status quo. Briefly, we find a Nash equilibrium where the initial proposer offers a policy in the intersection of the Pareto optimal set and the Pareto superior set that gives everyone their continuation values, and punishments are never implemented. Comparing the equilibrium outcomes under two different agendas – sequential recognition and random recognition – we find that there are advantages generated by the order of proposal under the sequential recognition rule. We also provide some conditions under which the players will prefer to rotate proposals rather than allow any specific policy to prevail indefinitely.


Nash Equilibrium Majority Rule Sequential Recognition Equilibrium Outcome Specific Policy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yan Chen
    • 1
  • Peter C. Ordeshook
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of EconomicsThe University of MichiganAnn Arbor
  2. 2.Division of Humanities and Social SciencesCalifornia Institute of TechnologyPasadenaU.S.A

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