We study the relationship between voters' preferences and the emergence of party platforms in two-party democratic elections with adaptive parties. In the model, preferences of voters and the opposition party's platform determine an electoral landscape on which the challenging party must adaptively search for votes. We show that changes in the underlying distribution of voters' preferences result in different electoral landscapes which can be characterized by a measure of ruggedness. We find that locally adapting parties converge to moderate platforms regardless of the landscape's ruggedness. Greater ruggedness, however, tempers a party's ability to find such platforms. Thus, we are able to establish a link between the distribution of voters' preferences and the responsiveness of adaptive parties.
Spatial Voting, Voter Preferences, Adaptive Behavior and Bounded Rationality
THis paper studies the relationship between voters' preferences and teh composition of party platforms in teh two-party democractice elections with adaptive parties. In the model, preferences determine an electoral landscape on which parties locally adapt platforms. Varying the distribution of voter's preferences alters the landscape's ruggedness and may effect parties' responsiveness. We find that in atwo-party democratic elections, adaptive parties genearlly locate in regions of high social utiliyt but cannot always find winning platforms. We also show that parties' ability to locate winning plaforms as well as teh rate of convergence of party platforms depends upon the
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