Party politics and elections

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    The financial health of British political parties: what the latest data tells us

The financial health of British political parties: what the latest data tells us

New data by the Electoral Commission on party funding shows, among other things, that Labour raised a record-breaking £16m in a year through membership fees alone, while the Conservatives received more money from bequests than from living members. Sam Power explains what these figures tell us about the state of play in UK party politics, and how they compare […]

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    Why has the populist radical right outperformed the populist radical left in Europe?

Why has the populist radical right outperformed the populist radical left in Europe?

Valerio Alfonso Bruno and James F. Downes draw on recent election data to show the extent to which the radical right has tended to outperform the radical left since the late-2000s financial crisis. They argue that the radical right has been able to offer a clearer message on key issues such as immigration which has translated into greater […]

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    Generation wars over Brexit – and beyond: how young and old are divided over social values

Generation wars over Brexit – and beyond: how young and old are divided over social values

Pippa Norris explains how generation gaps divide the electorate and mainstream parties. She writes that, while the EU referendum is a prime example of how these divisions play out in the UK, the changing nature of electoral cleavages raises important questions about politics and party competition in Western democracies more generally.

The Brexit decision shocked Britain’s image of itself, and […]

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    Distorted perceptions: how Leavers and Remainers view the economy – and with what consequences

Distorted perceptions: how Leavers and Remainers view the economy – and with what consequences

There is a divide between how Remainers and Leavers perceive the UK’s economic performance and other policy developments, explain Miriam Sorace and Sara B. Hobolt. A major consequence of this lack of agreement about basic facts is that reaching a consensus on how to navigate Brexit becomes even more complicated.

On the 23 June 2016, UK citizens voted to leave […]

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    The results of the 2018 voter ID pilots and why this is not the time for a national roll-out

The results of the 2018 voter ID pilots and why this is not the time for a national roll-out

Ben Stanford looks at the results of the voter ID pilot scheme used in the 2018 local elections in England and the potential implications of a national roll-out. He concludes that, given the current levels of voter apathy, such fundamental reforms may end up discouraging even more individuals from voting.

Pursuant to the government’s stated aim of combatting electoral fraud, […]

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    Londoners and the rest: how and why geography divides the British over their political influence

Londoners and the rest: how and why geography divides the British over their political influence

The extent of discontent with established politics in the UK has been laid bare in recent years. One popular explanation puts geography centre-stage: positing a divide between Londoners’ relative contentment and the angry North. Lawrence McKay shows that the regional divides are real, accounting for key factors such as class, education and age.

In the long shadow of the Brexit […]

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    Parental status as an electoral asset: how voters view politicians with and without children

Parental status as an electoral asset: how voters view politicians with and without children

Philip Cowley and Rosie Campbell examine the public’s view of British politicians with and without children, as well as the behaviour of MPs in their communications with voters. They find a preference for candidates who are parents and no punishment effect for women politicians with children.

When she was running for the leadership of the Conservative Party in 2016, one […]

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    ‘New poll suggests…’: How to tell when public opinion has really changed

‘New poll suggests…’: How to tell when public opinion has really changed

On a daily basis we are being presented with new opinion polls on various social and political issues, but do these really represent public attitudes? Using a statistical method called bootstrapping to estimate sampling variance, Patrick Sturgis and Jouni Kuha explain how such an approach can improve the quality of debate about UK public opinion.

The volume and frequency of […]