Comparative Politics

A Study of Political Economy in the Age of Austerity: How Incumbent Partisanship Affects Anti-Government Movements

Junpei Suzuki Waseda University & Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

Abstract

In this paper, I argue that austerity, when adopted by left-dominant governments, adds a “premium” to public grievances because, as the classic partisan theory posits (Hibbs 1977; Alesina 1987; Garrett and Lange 1989), citizens’ prior beliefs about policy consequences are asymmetrical such that they have fewer expectations of austerity when the left-wing parties are in power. Accordingly, I hypothesize that austerity led by the leftist governments results in a higher likelihood of anti-government movements than that led by the right-dominant government. I support this hypothesis by analyzing panel data covering up to 37 developed countries between 1973 and 2015.

Content

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