The selection methods of party leaders in Israel have gone through a gradual shift during the last 30 years. Like parties in several other democracies (Canada, United Kingdom, Japan), the major Israeli parties have changed their internal distribution of power to give their members a role in candidate and leadership selection. In Israel, as elsewhere, among the reasons for this reform was the desire to reduce the oligarchic tendencies of parties by creating a participatory revolution and by providing the rank-and-file members a chance to make a difference. This study maps the various methods used by Israeli parties for selecting their leaders and asks what the positive and negative consequences of the opening of the selection process are. The first section presents the various methods used by parties for selecting their leaders. The following three sections deal with the gradual process of democratization in leadership selection that occurred in the two major Israeli parties, and in other parties. The final section discusses the consequences of this democratization and tries to assess whether there is an ideal method for selecting party leaders.
Marino De Luca
Several parties throughout the world are democratizing their internal processes. The most notable tools for achieving this aim are the primary elections through which electoral candidates and party leaders are selected. This article seek to analyze these “selections” by using survey data relating to primary elections held in October 2011 by the French Socialist Party. In particular, we make use of survey data to describe extensively some social and political characteristics of the voters and to connect them with the electoral performances of the candidates.
Anna Cento Bull
This chapter examines the consequences of the financial scandal that engulfed the Northern League's inner circle—the so-called Magic Circle—made up of the party's leader Umberto Bossi, his family, and their most trusted friends. At the political level, the scandal brought to the fore a fight for the party's leadership, pitting Bossi against Roberto Maroni, the former minister of the interior, which ended with a clear victory for Maroni. At the electoral level, the party suffered a heavy defeat in the May 2012 local administrative elections, despite its opposition to the austerity measures introduced by the new Monti government. This chapter analyzes the significance of Maroni's victory in terms of the League's political style and policies. It also addresses the question of whether this party can once again reinvent itself and regain the support of the electorate in the North.
Women and the 2012 French Presidential Elections
Several women vied to be elected France's new president in 2012. These included Ségolène Royal, former Socialist presidential candidate in 2007, and Martine Aubry, Socialist party leader. Both these women were defeated by Fran?ois Hollande in the Socialist primary. In the main election, Marine le Pen garnered many headlines as the new leader of the controversial far-right party, the Front national. This article considers the campaigns and the media coverage of these women, as well as highlights the impact for women of the scandal surrounding disgraced politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn. The policy proposals of the different candidates are evaluated, before concluding with a discussion of the future prospects for women. There is some evidence of progress for women since the previous election, but women are still far from achieving full political equality in France.
That old cliche Wechselbad der Emotionen aptly describes how Christian Democrats have felt since Germany’s September 1998 federal election. First came a crushing defeat, their worst showing in decades, and the end of sixteen years in power under Helmut Kohl, “chancellor of unity.” Two of Kohl’s proteges, newly chosen federal party and Bundestag caucus chair, Wolfgang Schäuble, and his handpicked general secretary, Angela Merkel, then helped the CDU to an unexpectedly rapid recovery: during 1999, the party gained ground in every Land-level election and an absolute majority of the vote in several contests. But even before their champagne went flat, party leaders found themselves mired in postwar Germany’s worst political finance scandal, triggered by revelations about Kohl’s penchant for long sustaining a personal slush-fund with large, unreported private contributions, and even by charges of bribery.
Following the end of their government coalition with the Social Democratic Party, German Green Party leaders spoke of "a dawn of new opportunities" for Alliance 90/The Greens. They wanted to capitalize on the strategic opportunities afforded by Germany's new five-party system and on the unexpected rise of climate change in public debate. Shortly before the 2009 federal election, however, the party's "new opportunities" seem rather limited. Selectively focusing on one particular explanatory factor, this article contrasts the Green's neo-radical eco-political position as it has emerged since 2005 with the ways in which environmental issues are addressed by the currently popular LOHAS (Life of Health and Sustainability) consumer movement. It suggests that the German Greens may have paid too little attention to the ongoing reframing of the environmental issue in public discourse and that this has impaired their prospects for a swift return to government office.
The Beijing Upheaval of 1989 Revisited
Rilly Chen and Fei Yan
This article provides a multidimensional approach to understanding the interactional dynamics of political contention. By reexamining the highly influential case of the Beijing student movement in 1989 with newly published memoirs from top party leaders and central student figures of the movement, we show more clearly that the escalating conflict between the government and protesters and their nuanced interplay grew, developed, and took on its own identity as the process evolved. It was the increasingly boisterous divisions within both the Communist Party and the student body itself, coupled with their close interactional relationship and interdependence, that resulted in a violent outcome that neither party had envisaged or intended. This finding suggests that multidimensional interactions may have triggered causal processes that escalated both the scale and the influence of the mobilization.
advertising, corporate financing of parties, and campaigning on election day. Electoral action repertoires are shaped not just by national democratic rules, but also by the political parties’ pasts, social structures, and cultures. Party leaders are therefore
sorts and cohesion with an upsurge of inequalities at domestic and international levels. Third, the neo-populist response by several party leaders not only in most of Europe but also in Latin America and other areas of the world attracted the
Factors Behind its Emergence and Profile of a New Right-wing Populist Party
the Eurozone crisis while Gauland pointed to his negative experiences as part of the “Berlin Circle”—an alliance of conservative members within the cdu that was openly opposed by party leader Angela Merkel and her then Secretary-General Hermann Gröhe