Democracy and Disclosure: Electoral Systems and the Regulation of Political Finance

Election Law Journal, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 325-346, 2008

Posted: 11 Feb 2012

See all articles by Joel W. Johnson

Joel W. Johnson

Colorado State University, Pueblo

Date Written: February 10, 2012

Abstract

This article argues that a democracy’s regulations governing the disclosure of campaign and political finance depend on the country’s electoral system. Specifically, the likelihood that disclosure regulations for competitors in legislative elections extend to individual candidates (and not simply political parties) depends on how much voting and vote-counting procedures allow voters to determine the order in which a party’s candidates get elected. These electoral rules affect the degree to which individual candidates become objects of attention and/or active competitors in elections and thus also the “demand” for the revelation and control of candidates’ political finances. The argument extends the theoretical literature on electoral systems and the “candidate-centeredness” of elections and predicts a pattern of democracy and disclosure, the implications of which include variability in the availability of candidate-level information. A detailed survey of the political finance disclosure regulations for 44 countries — the most comprehensive analysis of these regulations to date — shows they relate strongly to electoral systems.

Keywords: Campaign finance regulations, campaign finance disclosure, electoral systems

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Joel W., Democracy and Disclosure: Electoral Systems and the Regulation of Political Finance (February 10, 2012). Election Law Journal, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 325-346, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2002852

Joel W. Johnson (Contact Author)

Colorado State University, Pueblo ( email )

2200 Bonforte Blvd
Pueblo, CO 81001
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
352
PlumX