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Demography in ethnic party fragmentation: Hungarian local voting in Romania

Stroschein, S; (2011) Demography in ethnic party fragmentation: Hungarian local voting in Romania. PARTY POLIT , 17 (2) 189 - 204. 10.1177/1354068810391161.

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Abstract

When and where might ethnic party outbidding occur? This article examines potential outbidding dynamics via a study of local elections in Romania, where the dominant Hungarian UDMR/RMDSz (Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania) was recently challenged by a rival party, the MPP (Hungarian Citizens' Party). A comparison of election results is made across cities and counties that differ according to demographic characteristics. Two primary findings emerge. First, Hungarian unity in the form of the RMDSz remained strong except under enclave conditions - where the ethnic minority is the local majority. Outbidding is more likely to be a luxury of enclave regions, where fragmentation will not involve a loss of power to another ethnic group, as could happen to a local minority or with 'split' demographics. Second, when majority-minority demographics are clear, cross-ethnic formal or informal coalitions are more likely to emerge. Cross-ethnic coalitions are rare under conditions of 'split' demographics, which exhibit a logic of ethnic polarization.

Type:Article
Title:Demography in ethnic party fragmentation: Hungarian local voting in Romania
DOI:10.1177/1354068810391161
Keywords:ethnic parties, ethnic politics, factions, Hungarians, outbidding
UCL classification:UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences > Political Science

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