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Class voting for radical-left parties in Western Europe: The libertarian vs. authoritarian class trade-off

Nils D. Steiner (), Lucca Hoffeller (), Yanick Gutheil () and Tobias Wiesenfeldt ()
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Nils D. Steiner: Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
Lucca Hoffeller: Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
Yanick Gutheil: Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
Tobias Wiesenfeldt: Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz

No 2207, Working Papers from Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

Abstract: Which classes vote for radical-left parties (RLPs) in Western Europe? Have these parties become the domain of highly educated socio-cultural professionals, or can they still attract support from the working class? Building on previous work on class voting in the two-dimensional policy space, this article show how class voting for RLPs is shaped these parties’ positions on the cultural dimension of political competition. Combining voter-level data from the European Social Survey (2002 to 2018) with information on RLPs’ positions for 12 Western European countries, we find evidence of a class trade-off: RLPs with more authoritarian positions receive relatively more support from production workers but relatively less support from socio-cultural professionals. These findings add to evidence that parties shape class voting. Ours is the first study to demonstrate that this is true for RLPs as well, showing how, in the early 21 st century, cultural positions matter for class voting.

Pages: 57 pages
Date: 2022-11-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm, nep-eur and nep-pol
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