The Political Consequences of National Crisis Management: Micro-Level Evidence from German Voters During the 2008/9 Global Economic Crisis

German Politics, Forthcoming

30 Pages Posted: 3 Jul 2015  

Achim Goerres

University of Duisburg-Essen - Institute of Political Science

Stefanie Walter

University of Zurich - Institute for Political Science

Date Written: July 2, 2015

Abstract

How does national crisis management affect the electoral fortunes of coalition governments? Drawing on micro-level data from just before the 2009 federal elections in Germany, this paper investigates how voters’ evaluation of specific policies against the global financial crisis affected approval of and voting intentions for the then-governing grand coalition. We find that voters in favour of the two most prominent anti-crisis policies, the car-scrap bonus and the public guarantee for banks, were more likely to approve of and to vote for the two incumbent parties. These evaluations of specific policies influenced individuals’ vote choice in addition to their assessments of the economic situation more generally and in addition to party identification. This suggests that even in greatest economic turmoil with blurred political responsibilities, government parties can win or lose voters through the implementation of specific economic policies.

Keywords: financial crisis, Germany, election, Bundestag, policy evaluation

Suggested Citation

Goerres, Achim and Walter, Stefanie, The Political Consequences of National Crisis Management: Micro-Level Evidence from German Voters During the 2008/9 Global Economic Crisis (July 2, 2015). German Politics, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2626025 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2626025

Achim Goerres (Contact Author)

University of Duisburg-Essen - Institute of Political Science ( email )

Lotharstrasse 65
Duisburg, D-47057
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.achimgoerres.de

Stefanie Walter

University of Zurich - Institute for Political Science ( email )

Dep. of International Relations
Seilergraben 49
CH-8001 Zurich
Switzerland

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