Presentation on theme: "Defections from Parties:"— Presentation transcript:
1 Defections from Parties: Tactical Voting, Split Voting and Protest VotingEva-Maria Otto
2 1. Definitions Tactical Voting Someone who votes for another party (or party candidate) other than their most preferred one if he or she expects to be more likely to influence the outcome of this election than by casting a sincere vote.
3 1. Definitions Split Voting Protest Voting In a electoral system in which voters have two votes, they can decide to cast aStraight ticket: giving both votes to the same party ORSplit ticket: giving their votes to two different partiesProtest Voting“Voters reacting against specific policies or failures of their ‘natural‘ parties rather than being positively attracted to another party“ (Heath et al., 1985: 113)
4 2. Tactical Voting Assumptions The literature on tactical voting agrees that institutional incentives are the driving force that spurs tactical votingDuverger: Political consequences of electoral systemsMechanical effect: how electoral systems affect the way votes are transformed into seats affect the outcomePsychological effect: how the electoral system affect voter‘s choice affect the vote
5 2. Tactical VotingVoters have rational expectations about electoral outcomes“Voters are servants of two masters“:Their preferences andTheir expectationsPoliticaly aware and informed voters: discussions and pre-election pollsVoters who do not follow the campaign: previous elections
6 2.1. Plurality system Mechanical effect Psycological effect Single Member Plurality system’s under-representation of minor partiesPsycological effectVoters’ reactions to this systematic under-representation
7 2.1. Plurality system Wasted-vote hypothesis Supporters of parties that are likely to come third (or worse) in a local constituency would do better to cast their vote for whichever of the top two parties they find more acceptable instead of “wasting“ their vote if they vote for their preferenceEspecially when the race between the top two parties is closeDo you think this is only true for smaller partysupporters (e.g. Liberal Democrats supporters)?
8 2.2 Mixed electoral system GermanyTwo votesCandidate Vote (Erststimme): the electorate vote for a candidate in single member districts and the victor is determined by a simply plurality casts the first half of MdBsList Vote: (Zweitstimme) vote for the list of a Land party and elects the other half of MdBs (Members of the Bundetag), which are elected in such a way that the total number of seats which a party receives including any constituency seat won is proportional to its percentage share of such list votes. This gives the system a proportional represention component.Threshold: 5%Parties and CoalitionsSPD (major party) and Greens (smaller party)CDU (major party) and FDP (smaller party)
9 2.2 Mixed electoral system Mechanical effectMixed electoral systems‘ tendency to let more than two parties be represented in the ParliamentPsyciological effectVoters’ reactions to possible coalition formations
10 2.2. Mixed electoral system Influence of electoral rules on how voters behaveWasted-vote hypothesisThe closer the district race, the more likely small party supporters are to cast a strategic candidate vote.Coalitions-insurance hypothesisIf major party supporters are unsure about the expectations whether or not the smaller coalition‘s partner will be represented in parliament and the higher their tendency to desert their most preferred party, the more likely they are to cast a strategic list vote.Under which system is tactical voting more likely: theplurality or mixed electoral system?
12 2.2. Mixed electoral system Voter‘s proclivity to vote strategicallyMotivations hypothesisThe weaker the voter‘s partisanship, the more strongly motivated they are to split their ticketCapability HypothesisThe higher the voter‘s level of political sophistication, the more likely they are to cast a strategic voteDoes that mean that tactical voting will increasein the future?
13 2.3. PR electoral system Israel One Vote: The unicameral Knesset is elected via a single, nation-wide district under proportional representationThreshold: 2%2006 Israeli electionIt was quite clear that the major centre party Kadima would win a plurality of the seats and serve as a senior partner in a multi-member governmentIt was unclear which smaller party would join the coalition (unlike the German case)
14 2.3. PR electoral system Coalition Hypothesis When voters perceive membership in the coalition to be out of reach for their preferred small party they desert it and instead endorse the lesser of the evils among those parties (ideologically nearest party) they perceive as potential coalition membersExtension of Duvergerian logic: not party entry into parliament, but party entry into governmentDo you think that there will be a lot of tactical voting inthis case, because there are many small parties and theoutcome is difficult to predict?
15 3. Split VotingDifferent meanings of split voting in different electoral systemsUS: selecting candidates of different parties for different types of offices (e. g. voting for a Democratic president and for a Republican senator and/or representative)Bicameral parliamentary systems in which elections for both houses are held on the same day: voting for different parties for the two housesMixed electoral systems: split ticket for members of the same house
16 3. Split Voting Reasons for split voting Special preference for a viableconstituency candidates ofanother partyWasted vote hypothesis: votersmay see no chance of winningfor their most preferred candidate tacticalCoalition Insurance strategy: votingsupport a particular coalitionVoters misunderstand the relativeimportance of the respective votes
17 3. Split Voting Difference between split voting and tactical voting Tactical Voting: Comparison of party preference and vote intention or decisionSplit Voting: Comparison of first and second vote Two forms of tactical voting are sufficient conditions of split ticket voting, but there are other causes
18 3. Split VotingGermanySmall party voters (according to second vote) desert their constituency candidates more in favour of large-party candidates than do large-party voters the other way around especially FDP votersRandom splitting: other vote combinations than CDU/FDP or SPD/GreensAttractive candidates: this is only the case for the Left party , which won some Berlin constituencies1990 survey: 50% were unable to answer the question which of the two votes is the party vote Ticket splitting has increased in Germany over thetime: In % of the voters split their ticket
19 What do you think the main reason is for the increasing split voting in Germany (e. g. weaker partisanship, voters do not understand the system etc.)?
20 4. Protest Voting Dissatisfied voters have two options Protest voting Lack of a genuinely preferred alternative (especially in Plurality systems)Signal their disaffection from their normal first-preference partyAbstention
21 4. Protest Voting Theoretical backround Rational Choice (Downs) Protest voting is irrationalWhen voters are disaffected with their first-preference choice, they will be more likely to abstain considering the cost of votingIf voters no longer prefer party A but instead rank party B higher, then protest voting disappears in favour of a simple switch of alignments
22 4. Protest Voting Do you think that decreasing in turnout in Western Alternative approch (Dunleavy and Margetts)Individuals define an appropiate ‘aspiration level‘ against which to judge their involvement, continuing to participate if this level is achieved, and dropping out if it is not.Do you think that decreasing in turnout in Westerncountries and the formation of new extremistparties like the “Lefts“ in Germany or the “NewZealand First“ are signals for an increasing indissatisfied voters?
23 5. Conclusion Tactical Voting The character of tactical voting differs between different electoral systems and the circumstances of each individual electionThe more proportional a system is the less motivation there is for voters to cast a strategic vote
24 5. Conclusion Split Voting The character of split voting also differs between different electoral systemsTactical voting can be one reason for a voter to split their ticket, but there are other reasons tooThe increasing in split voting in Germany is mostly due to easing behavioural norms of partisans, not partisan declinement in general
25 5. Conclusion Protest Voting The character of Protest Voting also differs between different electoral systemsDissatisfied voters have the choice between protest voting (voting for extremist parties) and abstention (lowers the turnout)
26 Thank you very much for your attention! The EndThank you very much for your attention!