Lecture 3 European Models b

Lecture 3 European Models b - Professor Kelemen European...

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Professor Kelemen European Politics Spring 2011 LECTURE 3 European Models of Democracy – Part B
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Outline Recapping / Completing lecture from last week How models of democracy vary ? 2 Case Studies: Germany (2005 Election) UK (2005 Election)
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Elections and their aftermath Introduction Types of Electoral Systems Plurality PR Others Votes into Seats Seats into governments Key Issues: Representativeness Accountability Stability/Effectiveness of gov’t
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Majority/Plurality Voting Single Member District Plurality Voting US and UK Duverger’s law Downs’ ‘Median voter theorem
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Duverger’s Law Single member district, plurality voting encourages a two party system
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Down’s Median Voter Theorem In single member district plurality elections, the two main parties will compete for the median voter.
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Median Voter theorem
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Other Majority voting systems in Europe France’s two round voting system National Assembly elections Single Member Districts Two rounds of voting: If no party gets a majority (> 50%), then all parties with more than 12.5% compete in Round 2 a week later. Whichever party gets the most votes in round 2 wins Presidential Election (with 2 rounds of voting) 1 st Round: lots of candidates 2 nd Round: Run-off between top 2 candidates from round 1.
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Proportional Representation Is far more common around the world than plurality voting …but almost a taboo to discuss in America
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Lani Guinier Harvard Law professor (1 st Tenured African American Woman at HLS) Clinton’s nominee for Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights (1993) Attacked by Conservatives over support for proportional representation voting – labelled 'anti-Constitutional' and 'quota queen' Clinton withdrew nomination
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Proportional Representation Basic principles: Multi-member districts % of seats party gets depends on % of vote they win Party List PR Closed list vs. open list Various calculations (d’Hondt, etc) District magnitude Mixed Systems: Germany
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Dutch system – Open List PR
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Germany Mixed System: Plurality and PR
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Proportional Representation: Impact Where Single Member District Plurality (aka US or UK system) encourages a 2 party system, Proportional Representation encourages multi-party system Multi-party system in turn requires coalition governments (since no 1 party is likely to have majority of seats in parliament)
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Comparing PR and Plurality: Traditional Anglo-American view Plurality Two-party System stable, moderate parties & effective government PR Multiparty System unstable, extremist & ineffective
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But there are criticisms of plurality voting too Manufactured vs. earned majorities Poor representation of minority interests Depresses turnout/participation Vote splitting among losers Strategic vs. sincere voting Gerrymandering
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Eldbridge Gerry’s Salamander
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Lecture 3 European Models b - Professor Kelemen European...

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