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La course au centre

Policy Convergence and Partisanship in France, 1981-2002

Sally Marthaler

Policy convergence between the political parties and the perception among voters that there is little to choose between left and right may be factors in the declining levels of partisanship observed in many advanced industrial democracies, including France, where these conditions emerged in the 1980s. Drawing on both quantitative and qualitative data, this article analyzes changes in the actual and perceived level of convergence between the mainstream parties in France from 1981 to 2002. It finds evidence of increasing policy convergence over the period as a result of a combination of endogenous and exogenous factors. It concludes that left-right ideological labels are still important to voters, even though they too have moved to the center, and that many of them want to see a clear dividing-line between the parties. The blurring of the boundaries between left and right and the “reversibility” of the mainstream parties has also enhanced the appeal of alternative and extremist parties.

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Bundestag Election 2009: Solidifying the Five Party System

Steven Weldon and Andrea Nüsser

Although characterized by widespread public apathy and record low voter turnout, the 2009 Bundestag election solidified a stable, but fluid five-party system that will likely be a defining feature of German political life for the next generation. The three minor parties each achieved historical bests at the polls with steep losses for the two traditional Volksparteien. Drawing on data from the German Longitudinal Electoral Study (GLES), this article examines the nature of this new five-party system with a closer look at each party's voters in the 2009 election. The analysis shows the breadth and stability of the five-party system—each party draws significant support across all sixteen Länder; and, despite a growing number of swing voters, each party has a core group of committed voters that alone exceeds the 5 percent national electoral threshold. We also find evidence that the increased volatility and fluidity of the party system is structured along the left-right ideological spectrum with the parties divided into two major camps and vote-switching much more likely within the respective camps rather than between them.

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The Enduring Effect of Immigration Attitudes on Vote Choice

Evidence from the 2021 German Federal Election

Hannah M. Alarian

.272) Left-right ideology 0.353 ** 0.480 ** 0.462 ** (0.084) (0.071) (0.068) Constant -3.745 ** -3.388 ** -3.309 ** (0.603) (0.548) (0.686) FDP Immigration important problem 0.417 * 0.138 -0

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Cause or Consequence?

The Alternative for Germany and Attitudes toward Migration Policy

Hannah M. Alarian

.006 (0.008) Religiosity 0.014 (0.011) 0.011 (0.011) 0.024 * (0.010) Left-Right Ideology -0.030 (0.020) -0.038 + (0.020) -0.042 ** (0.011) Constant 0.040 (0.026) -0.010 (0.030) 0.011 (0.027) State Fixed Effects

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Cues for Integration

Foreign Policy Beliefs and German Parliamentarians’ Support for European Integration

A. Burcu Bayram

Integration: An Empirical Test of Five Theories,” British Journal of Political Science 37, no. 1 (2007): 89–114; Matthew Gabel and John Huber, “Putting Parties in Their Place: Inferring Party LeftRight Ideological Positions from Party Manifestos Data

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Political Labels and Post-Politics

A Comparative Analysis of the Party Spectrum in Israel, Hungary, and Poland

Artur Skorek

Fuller. He argues that the party system is in the process of a 90-degree rotation of the left-right ideological axis. The new axis opposes “precautionary versus proactionary attitudes toward risk as principles of policymaking” ( Fuller 2012: 164 ). Both

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Introducing a New Dataset

The Israeli Policy Agendas Project

Amnon Cavari, Maoz Rosenthal, and Ilana Shpaizman

project is interested in attention to issues and not ideological preferences, the CAP codebook is based on policy issues and not left-right ideological positions. In addition, the coding does not include directionality (for example, whether a bill on