2014 as the First (Truly) European Elections?

27 Pages Posted: 20 Mar 2017

See all articles by Alexander Trechsel

Alexander Trechsel

University of Lucerne

Lorenzo De Sio

Luiss Guido Carli University

Diego Garzia

University of Lausanne

Date Written: March 2017


EP elections have so far been consistently characterized as “second-order”. We hypothesize that key processes are emerging which undermine the appropriateness of this model. We argue that, as a consequence of EU policies trying to address the economic and financial crisis, a stronger politicization of Europe has emerged. Accordingly, the national consequences of EU policies have put Europe on the table of national electorates. Together, these processes may lead to an overall increase in saliency of EP elections, so we hypothesize, and to a homogenization of political competition across EU members. We explore this framework in the context of the 2009 and 2014 EP elections. In line with extant applications, we first attempt to assess the core predictions of the second-order model through tests on aggregate electoral results. We then investigate specific explanatory mechanisms for the 2014 EP elections, by relating party performance with party stance on political issues.

Keywords: European Parliament, European elections, Second-order elections

Suggested Citation

Trechsel, Alexander and De Sio, Lorenzo and Garzia, Diego, 2014 as the First (Truly) European Elections? (March 2017). Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies Research Paper No. RSCAS 2017/14. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2934185 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2934185

Alexander Trechsel (Contact Author)

University of Lucerne ( email )

Hofstrasse 9
P.O. Box 7464
Luzern 7, CH - 6000

Lorenzo De Sio

Luiss Guido Carli University ( email )

Diego Garzia

University of Lausanne ( email )

Quartier Chambronne
Lausanne, Vaud CH-1015

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