Download Mandates, Parties, and Voters: How Elections Shape the by James H Fowler PDF

By James H Fowler

So much examine on two-party elections has thought of the end result as a unmarried, dichotomous occasion: both one or the opposite celebration wins. during this groundbreaking publication, James Fowler and Oleg Smirnov examine now not simply who wins, yet through how a lot, and so they marshal compelling proof that mandates-in the shape of margin of victory-matter. utilizing theoretical versions, laptop simulation, rigorously designed experiments, and empirical info, the authors express that when an election the coverage positions of either events flow within the course hottest via the profitable party-and they movement much more if the victory is big. furthermore, Fowler and Smirnov not just convey that the divergence among the coverage positions of the events is maximum whilst the former election used to be shut, but in addition that coverage positions are additional encouraged through electoral volatility and ideological polarization.

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Extra resources for Mandates, Parties, and Voters: How Elections Shape the Future (Social Logic of Politics)

Sample text

A party that wins the previous election in a landslide will actually offer a more moderate platform as electoral volatility increases because the greater uncertainty decreases the credibility of claiming a mandate. The second kind of uncertainty, confidence in prior beliefs, has not been studied previously but we show it also has an important impact on equilibrium platforms. Decreasing confidence in prior beliefs means parties have greater prior uncertainty about the location of the median voter and this causes both parties to offer more extreme platforms.

2 When choosing platforms, parties have full information about the previous election. This includes the location of platforms in the previous election (xL' x R), and the previous election results as reflected in the vote share for the left party, 0 ~ s ~ 1. To introduce uncertainty, we assume that parties have prior beliefs about the location of the median voter, M. l and variance f3 > O. The mean can be interpreted as a party's best guess about the location of the median voter, whereas the variance denotes its confidence in prior beliefs.

1 Summary of the Effects of Electoral Outcomes of Policy Exogenous Change Winning Party's Vote Share Increases Winning Party's Ideal Point Becomes More Extreme Winning party's platform becomes Somewhat more extreme Losing party's platform becomes Result # Effect Electoral Volatility Increases Confidence in Prior Beliefs Decreases Electoral Polarization Increases Much more extreme More extreme for close elections; more moderate for landslides More extreme More extreme Much more moderate Somewhat more moderate More extreme More extreme for close elections; more moderate for landslides More moderate 1,2 3 4 5 6 party tends to shift more than the winning party.

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