Ideology in Times of Crisis a Principal Component Analysis of Votes in the European Parliament, 2004–2019

31 Pages Posted: 18 May 2019

See all articles by Anatole Cheysson

Anatole Cheysson

European University Institute, Economics Department (ECO)

Nicolò Fraccaroli

University of Rome Tor Vergata, Faculty of Economics, Department of Economics, Law and Institutions; Bank of England

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: March 28, 2019

Abstract

This paper aims to identify the main dividing lines that determine the voting behaviour of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and how they evolved throughout the crisis. Introducing a new database that collects and classifies the full population of plenary votes from 2004 to 2019, this work uses principal component analysis to identify the latent patterns on which MEPs ally and divide. Focussing on economic votes, it finds that, while pre-crisis votes were mainly determined by differences across the left-vs-right spectrum and, only secondly, by differences in support for European integration, the crisis inverted this trend, making support for Europe the most relevant dividing line in the European Parliament. In support of this evidence, the paper introduces a new vote-scraping technique to investigate the ideological nature of these dimensions. Vote scraping reveals that the left-right cleavage is mainly ideological but with limited impact on budgetary resources, whereas the European dimension mostly reflects a conflict over the budget, with higher legislative impact and seemingly low ideological content.

Keywords: Ideology, European Parliament, Crisis

JEL Classification: P16, C38

Suggested Citation

Cheysson, Anatole and Fraccaroli, Nicolò, Ideology in Times of Crisis a Principal Component Analysis of Votes in the European Parliament, 2004–2019 (March 28, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3361832 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3361832

Anatole Cheysson

European University Institute, Economics Department (ECO) ( email )

Florence
Italy
3336827194 (Phone)

Nicolò Fraccaroli (Contact Author)

University of Rome Tor Vergata, Faculty of Economics, Department of Economics, Law and Institutions ( email )

Via Columbia, 2
Rome, 00133
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/view/nfraccaroli/home

Bank of England ( email )

Threadneedle Street
London, EC2R 8AH
United Kingdom

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
67
Abstract Views
618
rank
288,759
PlumX Metrics