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Sherrill Stroschein, "Demography in ethnic party fragmentation: Hungarian local voting in Romania," Party Politics, 17 (March, 2011), 189-204. [Available at http://ppq.sagepub.com/content/vol17/issue2/ ]

First paragraph:
The potential for ethnic party fragmentation has been a crucial issue for students of ethnic politics. In contrast to non-ethnic parties that appeal to a mass public, sometimes moderating claims for this purpose, ethnic party appeals are made to a limited ethnic audience. As outlined by Donald Horowitz (1985), for this reason would-be challengers to ethnic group leadership have an incentive to appear 'more' ethnic than others, which can produce a mechanism of outbidding. Ethnic parties, or parties founded on an ethnic principle, are thus often understood to encourage extremism.

Figures and Tables:
Table 1. Demographic variation and minority ethnic party dynamics
Table 2. Election results for Hungarian parties as percentage of those voting,
Table 3. Election results as percentage of those voting,
Table 4. Election results as percentage of those voting

Last Paragraph:
(First paragraph of Conclusions) The evidence outlined here points to the importance of local demographic variation for ethnic voters in deciding whether to support an outbidding challenger. While elites have strong incentives to engage in outbidding activities, such bids will not be successful unless they are responded to by voting publics. These results show that the challenger party was only successful in areas where ethnic voters could afford to support it without ceding council seats to the other ethnic group - in enclave areas where they were the local majority. In addition, strategies for relating to the other ethnic group varied by demographic locale, with some cross-ethnic coalitions where there were clear majorities and minorities. However, cross-group coalitions were far less likely under split ethnic demographics; rather, ethnic polarization was more likely to emerge there.

Last updated March 2011