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Challenges and Responses in British Party Politics

Cain, Bruce E. (1977) Challenges and Responses in British Party Politics. Social Science Working Paper, 171. California Institute of Technology , Pasadena, CA. (Unpublished)

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This paper addresses the question of why parties decline in electoral support and examines particularly the recent dealignment in Great Britain. The general theme is that dealignment depends on the nature of the demands placed upon the parties by the electorate and the response of the parties to those demands, An analysis of the key issues of the sixties and seventies shows that there were changes in the agenda of British politics, particularly in the form of increasingly salient economic problems and the emergence of several cross-cutting issues like immigration and devolution. It is argued that to some extent the intrinsic complexity of these issues and the demands they placed upon the parties should be blamed for the dealignment of support from the major parties during this period. At the same time, there is evidence that the response of the parties to these problems also contributed to their current predicament both in the sense that self-interested vote maximization led to voter alienation and that the institutionalization of support made adaptation and change more difficult.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Working Paper)
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Additional Information:Published as Cain, Bruce E. "Challenges and responses in British party politics." Comparative Politics 12.3 (1980): 335-348.
Group:Social Science Working Papers
Subject Keywords:Political parties, Conservatism, Identifiers, Labor parties, Liberalism, Political elections, Electorate, Labor unions, Political attitudes, Liberal parties
Series Name:Social Science Working Paper
Issue or Number:171
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20171024-154341430
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:82635
Deposited By: Jacquelyn Bussone
Deposited On:24 Oct 2017 22:59
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 18:56

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