For some years now the clamour for the democratisation of internal party politics has been spreading. This issue has been addressed in Italy and France. In the run-up to the 2013 parliamentary election in Italy and the 2012 presidential election in France, leftist coalitions held open primary elections to select their chief executive candidates, with Pier Luigi Bersani and Franc¸ois Hollande finally emerging as nominees. In this article, we examine whether the levels of turnout and competition in the party primaries are associated with the results of the general election. Using data at the level of the Italian province and the French de´partement, we show that the results of the general election were affected by the primaries. We show that turnout enhanced electoral performance, while competition depressed it. The positive effects of turnout were greater than the negative effects of competition.

The effects of primaries on electoral performance: France and Italy in comparative perspective

DE LUCA, MARINO;VENTURINO, FULVIO
2017

Abstract

For some years now the clamour for the democratisation of internal party politics has been spreading. This issue has been addressed in Italy and France. In the run-up to the 2013 parliamentary election in Italy and the 2012 presidential election in France, leftist coalitions held open primary elections to select their chief executive candidates, with Pier Luigi Bersani and Franc¸ois Hollande finally emerging as nominees. In this article, we examine whether the levels of turnout and competition in the party primaries are associated with the results of the general election. Using data at the level of the Italian province and the French de´partement, we show that the results of the general election were affected by the primaries. We show that turnout enhanced electoral performance, while competition depressed it. The positive effects of turnout were greater than the negative effects of competition.
primary election; elections; Italy; France; participation; competition
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11584/199532
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