Two Sword Lengths: Losers' Consent and Violence in National Legislatures
May 6, 2012
National legislative chambers should be venues for peacefully resolving conflicts between opposing groups. However, they can sometimes become the scenes of physical violence between legislators. Legislative violence is an indication that a country's democratic institutions are functioning far from perfectly as legislative losers are deciding to drop out of the 'game', rather than consent to the winners' decisions. In order to better understand these situations I use a new data set to examine what features are associated with violence in national legislative chambers. My main findings are that established democracies, democracies with highly proportional electoral outcomes and with large governing majorities are less likely to have legislative brawls. These results suggest that violence between legislators is less likely when the gaps between winners' and losers' experience, representation, preferences and power are smaller.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 34
Keywords: legislatures, violence, electoral proportionality, institutional design, democratic consolidation, losers' consentworking papers series
Date posted: April 23, 2012 ; Last revised: May 7, 2012
© 2013 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
This page was processed by apollo8 in 0.641 seconds