Does government performance matter? Electoral support for incumbents in six post-communist countries

Gherghina, S. (2011) Does government performance matter? Electoral support for incumbents in six post-communist countries. Contemporary Politics, 17(3), pp. 257-277. (doi: 10.1080/13569775.2011.597144)

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For two decades, the Central and Eastern European party politics has been characterized by the widespread inability of parties to secure stable political support (reflected in high levels of electoral volatility) to allow their presence in government for consecutive terms. This paper investigates the factors that trigger support for incumbent parties in post-communist countries. In doing so, it examines the effect of individual evaluations at the systemic level (i.e. satisfaction with democracy, government activity), partisan attachment (i.e. preference), and objective indicators of individual economic success (i.e. the level of income) on the vote for incumbents. This cross-national analysis is conducted at the individual-level in six post-communist countries chosen on the basis of the most similar system design. The study uses data from election surveys at two different moments in time (mid-1990s and the first elections of the 2000s) and combines bivariate and multivariate statistical analyses. The results indicate that partisanship and positive evaluations of the government explain most of the vote for incumbents. Apart from these visible patterns, there are some other valuable results in specific countries understandable solely within the larger domestic political context.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gherghina, Dr Sergiu
Authors: Gherghina, S.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Contemporary Politics
Publisher:Taylor and Francis (Routledge)
ISSN (Online):1469-3631
Published Online:14 September 2011

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