Resources, Enforcement, and Party Discipline in Candidate-Centered PR

Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:30PM - 1:30PM • C103 Hesburgh Center • Calendars: Main

Monika Nalepa

Assistant Professor of Political Science
Kellogg Institute Faculty Fellow
University of Notre Dame

Royce Carroll

Assistant Professor of Political Science
Rice University

"Resources, Enforcement, and Party Discipline in Candidate-Centered PR"

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
12:30pm - C103 Hesburgh Center

When do candidate-centered electoral systems produce undisciplined parties? In this paper we examine party discipline under ``open list'' proportional representation, where MPs have incentives to appeal to both their leaders and voters. First, our model highlights how legislators' preferences and popularity with voters mediate political leaders' ability to enforce discipline. Conditional on MP's preferences, loyalty depends on parties' organizational costs and resources for enforcing discipline.  To test the model's implications, we use data on legislative voting in Poland's parliament since 1997. Consistent with the model, we find that disloyalty depends on party leaders lacking enforcement capacity and resources in the context of MPs with divergent preferences. First, individuals with greater electoral contributions to the party are more disloyal, given divergent preferences. Second, we show that unity varies considerably with changes in government status across time for all parties.