Pivotal Voters and Political Equilibria

Part of the International Studies in Economics and Econometrics book series (ISEE, volume 28)


One central element in the literature on electoral competition is the degree of platform convergence - the extremes being full convergence and systematic divergence. To explain divergence, we can begin by distinguishing between necessary and sufficient conditions. The former pertains to the attitudes (preferences) of voters and the latter to the political game, i.e. to the way institutions and behaviors are modeled. Once we recognize that the precommitment of candidates can be traced back to the attitudes of voters, it is clear that the presence of polarized voter preferences is a prerequisite for platform differentiation. ‘The aim of this paper is to test for the presence of this necessary condition.


Electoral Result Vote Share Political Competition Abstention Rate Preference Polarization 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1993

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