By Amel Ahmed
Amel Ahmed brings new ancient proof and a unique theoretical framework to undergo at the research of democratization. the politics of electoral method selection on the time of suffrage growth between early democratizers, she exhibits that the electoral structures utilized in complex democracies this day have been firstly devised as exclusionary safeguards to guard pre-democratic elites from the effect of democratization and, relatively, the existential hazard posed via operating type mobilization. the ever-present use and enduring nature of those safeguards calls into query the established photo of democracy relocating alongside a direction of accelerating inclusiveness. as an alternative, what emerges is an image that's riddled with ambiguity, the place inclusionary democratic reforms mix with exclusionary electoral safeguards to shape an everlasting a part of the hot democratic order. This e-book has very important implications for our figuring out of the dynamics of democratic improvement either in early democracies and in rising democracies at the present time.
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Additional resources for Democracy and the Politics of Electoral System Choice: Engineering Electoral Dominance
However, the adoption of PR would make it much more likely that the majority would remain in the hands of the right in general, and it would make it much more difﬁcult for workers’ parties to secure the majority they would need to enact radical redistributive policies. Though always as a last resort, the failure to prevent the rise of a workers’ party or suppress the more radical elements within it led right parties to seek more favorable grounds for electoral competition under PR. Ultimately, the choice of SMP or PR was neither a function of narrowly construed partisan interests, nor was it driven by the dictates 32 Introduction: contradictions and ambiguities of democratization of economic coordination.
For example the Democratic Party of the United States, throughout most of the nineteenth century was heavily reliant on rural support and would, at the time, be considered an agrarian rather than middle-class party (Ashworth 1987, 21–22). The Danish Venstre was also established as an anti-tax, farmers’ party, and continued to be a champion of agrarian interests (Thomas 1988, 279). In addition to the economic cleavage, other divisions resulted from what Lipset and Rokkan have termed the National Revolution, “the conﬂict between the central nation-building culture and the increasing resistance of the ethnically, linguistically, or religiously distinct subject population” (Lipset and Rokkan 1967, 14).
Most problematic is the implicit assumption that parties represent distinct and uniform class interests (Cappocia and Ziblatt 2010; Martin and Swank 2012). As will be evident in the case studies discussed in subsequent chapters, right parties were complex composites of interests, and the process of electoral system choice was often driven by competing intra-party factions with conﬂicting partisan and economic interests. It was the severity of the existential threat in these cases that led to a homogenization of class interests both within and between right parties as party elites sought to make common cause against rising workers’ parties and the radical inﬂuences within them.