Leaders' Personalities and the Outcomes of Democratic Elections
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This unique edited volume by some of the leading scholars in the field, examines the importance, or non-importance, of the personalities of political leaders in determining the outcomes of democratic elections. The book argues, contrary to conventional wisdom, that relatively few voters are swayed by candidates' personal characteristics. Their findings imply that modern democratic pointers is not nearly as candidate-cent red and personality-orientated as is often supposed. They also suggest that parties' policies and their performance in office usually count for far more than the men and women they chose as their leaders.
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If this came entirely at the expense of the Conservatives, the latter party's share would drop from 43 to 39 percent, right on the brink of losing its parliamentary majority.44 Given the stakes in 1988, a Conservative 41 This exercise is closely akin to that in Bean and Mughan, "Leadership Effects." Below, I walk through thought experiments explicitly modeled on theirs. Conceptually, where Table 6.1 describes "hypothetical" effects, Figure 6.2 presents "level" effects. The distinction is
erratically nationalist LDPR (Liberal-Democratic Party of Russia) topped the polls in the party-list vote in 1993 and the KPRF (Communist Party of the Russian Federation) followed suit in 1995. NDR (Our Home Is Russia), the pro-Yeltsin bloc led by Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, had to settle for one-tenth of the party-list vote in the 1995 election. The long-awaited presidential election scheduled for mid 1996 had a prelude uproarious even by the standards of a polity buffeted by regime
alternatives. Since the proportion of party identifiers in the electorate declined during the 1972-90 period, a separate analysis of the determinants of voting behavior among the nonaligned citizens, who now form a much larger proportion of the electorate, is clearly necessary. The data in Figure 5.2 fit neatly into the results presented so far. Compared with party identifiers, the voting behavior of the unaffiliated is more strongly influenced by their candidate preferences; but, at the same
(dummy variables for Catholics and non-religious), ethnicity (five dummy variables), gender, and two issue variables, the major economic issue for the year,28 and the Quebec/French Canada indicator appropriate to the party.29 Leaders as Personalities A further implication is that personality factors should be represented as directly as possible, given that general indicators of the esteem in which a leader is held are likely to include much that has nothing to do with personality. Fortunately,