Political conduct and misconduct: probing public opinion

Allen, N. and Birch, S. (2011) Political conduct and misconduct: probing public opinion. Parliamentary Affairs, 64(1), pp. 61-81. (doi: 10.1093/pa/gsq007)

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The media and public responses to the expenses scandal of 2009 demonstrated the enduring importance of standards of conduct in British public life. This article addresses some basic questions concerning citizens' attitudes towards political wrongdoing, including how much notice people actually take of politicians' misbehaviour, how much importance citizens attach to politicians' integrity and how big a problem in politics political misconduct is thought to be. Drawing on responses to a representative survey of the British public, this article finds that most people do take some notice of scandals, and that most people, when forced to choose, prize honesty in their politicians over competence. It also finds that these factors influence how big a problem certain types of behaviour are perceived to be.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Birch, Professor Sarah
Authors: Allen, N., and Birch, S.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Parliamentary Affairs
Publisher:Oxford University Press on behalf of the Hansard Society for Parliamentary Government
ISSN (Online):1460-2482

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