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Party choice in hard times: Group-specific responses to economic downturns in Sweden

Journal article
Authors J. Lindvall
Johan Martinsson
Henrik Oscarsson
Published in Electoral Studies
Volume 32
Issue 3
Pages 529-535
ISSN 0261-3794
Publication year 2013
Published at Department of Political Science
Pages 529-535
Language en
Keywords Economic voting, POLITICS, STATES
Subject categories Political Science


This article asks if, when, and why different groups of voters behave differently in the wake of economic downturns. We examine two Swedish elections (1994 and 2010) that were held just after two deep recessions (the financial crisis of 1991-1993 and the 2008-2009 Great Recession). We find that group differences were much larger in 2010 than they were in 1994. After the 1991-1993 recession, the government's electoral support declined across the board. In 2010, there were large differences between voters with low economic status (who were unlikely to support the government) and voters with high economic status (who were likely to do so). Our findings suggest that group differences in electoral behavior after an economic downturn depend on contextual differences across elections. We argue that future research should pay close attention to the magnitude of economic shocks, the development of asset prices (especially real estate), and changes in social policy. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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