Changes since the last edition: • The previous edition didn't quite fit modules on either comparative politics or voters and elections. The new edition is more closely mapped to modules on the latter. • New chapters on authoritarian elections and regime change, and electoral integrity. • Re-inclusion of a chapter on voting behaviour. • Stronger focus on the economy.

Electoral Institutions and Representation

Electoral institutions and representation
Michael Gallagher

Elections, as we were reminded in the previous chapter, are a cornerstone of democracy. A regime under which elections do not take place clearly does not qualify as a democracy under pretty much any definition of that term, but the mere holding of elections does not suffice to render a state democratic. The absence of the proverbial “level playing field” can be achieved by a range of methods: these might include onerous requirements (a substantial financial deposit, or a high number of signatures) for getting onto the ballot paper in the first place, difficulties placed in the way of opposition parties in getting their message across to the electorate, or irregularities in the recording or counting ...

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