This article examines electoral cycles in legislative budget decisions. Where local structures play an important role in candidate selection and election, legislators' incentives to amend the executive spending proposal can depend on the proximity of elections, leading to more spendthrift behavior in the run-up to popular votes. However, stringent budget institutions can counteract this tendency. Using a unique dataset of executive spending proposals and approved budgets in Sweden, I find strong empirical support for these predictions. Future studies of electoral cycles should pay greater attention to separating the contributions of the legislative and executive stages of the budgetary process and the conditions that foster electoral cyclicality in legislatures.