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Insider or Outsider? Grand Corruption and Electoral Accountability

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Monika Bauhr
Nicholas Charron
Publicerad i Comparative Political Studies
ISSN 0010-4140
Publiceringsår 2017
Publicerad vid Quality of Government Institute (QoG)
Statsvetenskapliga institutionen
Språk en
Länkar DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/001041...
Ämnesord corruption and patronage, elections, public opinion, voting behavior, accountability, quality of democracy
Ämneskategorier Statsvetenskap

Sammanfattning

While democratic accountability is widely expected to reduce corruption, citizens to a surprisingly large extent opt to forgo their right to protest and voice complaints, and refrain from using their electoral right to punish corrupt politicians. This article examines how grand corruption and elite collusion influence electoral accountability, in particular citizens’ willingness to punish corrupt incumbents. Using new regional-level data across 21 European countries, we provide clear empirical evidence that the level of societal grand corruption in which a voter finds herself systematically affects how she responds to a political corruption scandal. Grand corruption increases loyalty to corrupt politicians, demobilizes the citizenry, and crafts a deep divide between insiders, or potential beneficiaries of the system, and outsiders, left on the sidelines of the distribution of benefits. This explains why outsiders fail to channel their discontent into effective electoral punishment, and thereby how corruption undermines democratic accountability.

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