Choosing Europe?: The European Electorate and National Politics in the Face of Union

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Overview

This is a book about elections to the European Parliament, their failure to legitimate and control the exercise of power in the European Union, and the consequences of this failure for domestic politics in EU member states. It also sheds new light on why voters behave the way they do. The authors examine the 1989 Europe-wide elections with the aid of large-scale surveys fielded in all twelve member countries of the (then) European Community--placing European citizens within their institutional, political, economic, and social contexts. In particular, because three countries held national elections concurrently with the 1989 European elections, the study controls for the presence or absence of a national election context--permitting the authors to investigate electoral behavior in general, not just at European elections. Looking at such behavior while taking account of the strategic contexts within which elections are held has yielded new insights about turnout and party choice, while clarifying the crisis of legitimacy that faces the European Union. The more recent Europe-wide elections of 1994 are used to validate the findings.

This book will be of interest to political scientists interested in elections, the European Union, comparative politics, and political development.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780472103577
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/1996
  • Pages: 536
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 The Problem: Representation and Democracy in the European Union 3
2 The Foundations: Unanswered Questions from the Study of European Elections, 1979-1994 14
3 The Research: Studying the Elections of 1989 and 1994 33
4 Belgium: An Electorate on the Eve of Disintegration 59
5 Britain: Opening Pandora's Box 78
6 Denmark: Second-order Containment 97
7 France: The Midwife Comes to Call 115
8 Germany: A Bored Electorate 137
9 Greece: A Confused Electorate 157
10 Ireland: An Electorate with its Mind on Lower Things 166
11 Italy: Consulting the Oracle 186
12 Luxembourg: Second-order Irrelevance 201
13 The Netherlands: Small Party Evolution 209
14 Northern Ireland: Second-order Entrenchment 227
15 Portugal: An Ephemeral Election 242
16 Spain: A Dress Rehearsal for the National Elections 252
17 The Dog that Did Not Bark: The 1994 Elections in the Light of 1989 268
18 The Party Context: Outcomes 287
19 The Institutional Context: Turnout 306
20 The Strategic Context: Party Choice 332
21 Conclusions: The Electoral Connection and the Democratic Deficit 366
Coda: What We Have Learned about Voting and Elections 391
App. A The European Election Studies 409
App. B Variables Employed and Methods of Analysis 415
App. C Replications of 1989 Findings using 1994 Election Study Data 435
App. D Results of the 1989 and 1994 European Elections 452
List of Contributors 473
References 477
Author Index 494
Subject Index 499
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