Return to: Search Page or to: Table of Contents Vol. 19, Issue 5

John Ishiyama, Anna Batta, and Angela Sortor, "Political parties, independents and the electoral market in sub-Saharan Africa," Party Politics, 19 (September 2013), 695-712. [Available at ]

First paragraph:
E. E. Schattscheider (1942: 1) once wrote that 'modern democracy is unthinkable save in terms of the parties'. Indeed, parties perform functions that are crucial to the development and maintenance of democracy, such as representation, integration of voters into the political system, and recruiting and training leaders. Furthermore, political parties hold the government accountable while articulating opposition and dissent (Aldrich, 1995; Diamond and Gunther, 2001; Randall and Svasand, 2002). Others have argued that political parties play a key role in integrating diverse populations and in creating a common political identity (Apter, 1971; Coleman and Rosberg, 1964; Huntington, 1968).

Figures and Tables:
Table 1. Number and percentage of independent candidates who ran for election by country.
Table 2. Did an Independent run in district? Pooled logit regression results for Ghana, Malawi and Zambia.
Table 3. Did an Independent run in district? Disaggregated logit regression results for Ghana, Malawi and Zambia
Table 4. Did the percent independents received in prior elections in a district affect whether an Independent ran in the subsequent election?

Last Paragraph:
(Second paragraph of Conclusions) The one consistent finding across all models was that incumbent governing party performance has a strong dampening effect on the entrance of independent candidates into a political competition. The incumbent governing party (which presumably has greater access to administrative capital) has a greater impact on squeezing out independent candidates (and voters for independent candidates) because it offers inducements for political elites NOT to run as independents. The results reported above support these expectations. The performance of incumbent governing parties was associated with a reduced likelihood of the appearance of independent candidates (as predicted by hypothesis 1).

Last updated November 2013