Left Behind? Partisan Politics after the Financial Crisis
University of Oxford
University College London - School of Public Policy
APSA 2012 Annual Meeting Paper
The financial crisis that enveloped much of the developed world after 2007 is intriguing because it both appears to call into question large portions of mainstream right-wing economic orthodoxy and it does not appear to have led to any systematic electoral benefit for left-wing parties. Using election studies in Britain and Germany, we explore how economic attitudes and vote choices have been affected by the crisis. We find that the governing British Labour Party suffered hugely from a collapse in perceived economic competence. Meanwhile, despite presiding over a similarly-sized recession in Germany, the CDU faced a very much lower electoral penalty. Notwithstanding the economic decline, Merkel seems to have been saved by voter perceptions that she had the more sensible policies for responding to the crisis than the SPD.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 34
Date posted: July 13, 2012 ; Last revised: August 22, 2012