"Authoritarian Determinants of Democratic Party Competition:
The Communist Successor Parties in East Central Europe,"
Party Politics, 12 (May, 2006), 415-437.
How does the continued presence of authoritarian actors
affect political party competition in new democracies? As
major historical holdovers from the authoritarian ancien
régime, what continuing impact do they have on
democratic competition, and how do their choices and actions
affect other democratic actors?
Figures and Tables:
Table 1. Freedom House rating of fairness in elections and
political freedoms (1: free, 7: fully repressive13)
Table 2. Variation in party competition
Figure 1. Post-1989 competitive pathways
Finally, the large and important literature on party
transformation has understandably focused on the changes in
party organizations, programs and policies as its analytical
endpoint. Yet the influence of the communist successors on
the robustness of party competition in East Central Europe
suggests that it may be useful to examine party
transformation as an independent causal variable and trace
its effects on other parties and party competition. The
transformation of major parties is likely to affect the
calculations of other actors: the electoral choices of
voters, the coalition preferences of other parties, etc. If
changes in the competitive situation prompt parties to
transform, their actions then feed back into party
competition, and the extent to which it offers a credible
threat of replacement to governing parties.