Two types of public choice models have been applied to model the political economy of farm programs: the self-willed government (SWG) model and the clearinghouse government (CHG) model. In terms of theory, the two models are very similar but most analysts prefer the CHG model. In terms of empirical work, the CHG model has done a little more-but not much more-to further our understanding of the causes of farm programs. Reviewing the theoretical and applied literature indicates that one should extend and refine the models so as to allow explicitly for a larger number of interest groups (especially agribusiness and foreign interests), to allow multiple policy instruments to be applied jointly, and to explain the choice(s) of policy instruments jointly with the rate of protection. Copyright 1991 Western Economic Association International.
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