Representing the region on the floor: Socioeconomic characteristics of electoral districts and legislative speechmaking

Bäck, Hanna ; Debus, Marc

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Document Type: Article
Year of publication: 2018
The title of a journal, publication series: Parliamentary Affairs
Volume: 71
Issue number: 1
Page range: 73-102
Place of publication: London
Publishing house: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0031-2290 , 1460-2482
Publication language: English
Institution: Außerfakultäre Einrichtungen > Mannheim Centre for European Social Research - Research Department B
School of Social Sciences > Politikwissenschaft, Vergleichende Regierungslehre (Debus 2012-)
Subject: 320 Political science
Abstract: Does it matter which electoral districts Members of Parliament (MPs) represent when participating in parliamentary debates? We suggest that the party leadership, in particular in governing parties, will try to keep MPs off the floor if they come from regions with economic problems, because such MPs are more likely to deviate from the party line. This should be especially likely when MPs are directly elected and have incentives to create a personal platform. The characteristics of the German electoral system allow for evaluating this argument. By analysing 9824 speeches in Bundestag debates focusing on economic issues and 8357 speeches held in debates on societal, foreign and education policy, we find support for our hypotheses that directly elected MPs deliver significantly fewer speeches in economic debates the worse the economic situation is in the district they represent. However, there is no clear pattern when differentiating between MPs from the government or opposition camp in terms of the number of delivered speeches in parliamentary debates.

Dieser Eintrag ist Teil der Universitätsbibliographie.

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