Book Review | Rethinking US Election Law: Unskewing the System by Steven Mulroy

Book Review | Rethinking US Election Law: Unskewing the System by Steven Mulroy

In Rethinking US Election Law: Unskewing the System, Steven Mulroy offers comprehensive considerations of arguments in favour of and against proposed reforms of US election law. This is an excellent and engaging read that exposes the structural flaws in the US government system and provides tangible, achievable proposals to address them, writes Erica Frazier.

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Why do ‘niche parties’ perform so well in European and subnational elections?

Why do ‘niche parties’ perform so well in European and subnational elections?

Single-issue parties, such as the Brexit Party and Greens, tend to do better in local and European elections across Europe. Emmy Lindstam examines why, and finds that voters are willing to vote switch on an issue they think is overlooked by their preferred party, particularly if they think the stakes are low for that election.

It’s time to change election campaign law to stop politicians lying

It’s time to change election campaign law to stop politicians lying

How do you ensure that political campaigns don’t rely on lies and misinformation? James Organ proposes changing election campaign law to prohibit knowingly false political statements by campaigners, and suggests that involving voters, via a citizens’ assembly, could be one way to ensure the quality of political information improves in any referendum.

After the prorogation coup, what’s left of the British constitution?

After the prorogation coup, what’s left of the British constitution?

The contemptuous ease with which the Johnson-Cummings regime has attempted to cripple parliamentary consideration of alternatives to a no-deal Brexit by proroguing parliament raises serious issues about the remaining value of the UK’s ‘unfixed constitution’. This controversy comes after a prolonged period in which the executive under Theresa May used every micro-institutional weapon to blackmail MPs into accepting its deal. Patrick Dunleavy argues that the UK has slipped into having a failed constitution, where core democratic institutions are contaminated by rigged micro-institutions. The control of power has become dominated by a bunch of executive tricks, and an uncodified ‘constitution’ no longer provides any predictable or worthwhile constraints on government action. Yet it may be only a small step from creating a failed constitution to becoming some version of a failed state.

Posted in: Parliament
Leader evaluations and electoral participation: the personalisation of voter turnout?

Leader evaluations and electoral participation: the personalisation of voter turnout?

We know that voters identify less with political parties than they used to, and that politics has become more personalised. What effect has this had on turnout? Frederico Ferreira da Silva, Diego Garzia and Andrea de Angelis test the effect of voters’ identification with political leaders on turnout in 13 West European countries and find that the personal identification with a leader increases turnout, and that this pattern has increased over time and also depends on voters’ patterns of media consumption.

Book Review | The First Marx: A Philosophical Introduction by Douglas Burnham and Peter Lamb

Book Review | The First Marx: A Philosophical Introduction by Douglas Burnham and Peter Lamb

In The First Marx: A Philosophical Introduction, Douglas Burnham and Peter Lamb bring together Marx’s early writings in order to shape them into a distinct political philosophy. This is a diligently and rigorously researched work, writes Tarique Niazi, that will serve as a must-have primer for both early and advanced students and scholars of Marx.

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Threat of prorogation: what can the Commons do?

Threat of prorogation: what can the Commons do?

The Prime Minister has requested and received consent for the current parliament to be prorogued, and plans to introduce a new Queen’s Speech before the Brexit deadline of 31 October. David Howarth assesses the options available for those wishing to oppose this and enable the Commons to prevent a no deal Brexit.

Youth political engagement in the EU: The age of a democracy accounts for variations in levels of youth participation

Youth political engagement in the EU: The age of a democracy accounts for variations in levels of youth participation

While socio-demographic characteristics (at individual level) matter for levels of political participation, country-level characteristics have an effect as well. Magdelina Kitanova shows that the democratic maturity of a country influences patterns of political participation among young people in the EU. Youth political engagement varies significantly, and young individuals living in established democracies are more likely to be politically active.

Governing as a permanent form of campaigning: why the civil service is in mortal danger

Governing as a permanent form of campaigning: why the civil service is in mortal danger

Patrick Diamond writes that the process of governing is being transformed into a highly politicised form of campaigning, with polling and short-term politics being more important to Ministers than long-term policy. This puts the capacity of the state to steer a sensible course through the perilous post-Brexit landscape in serious doubt.

Book Review | Measuring Poverty Around the World by Anthony B. Atkinson, edited by John Micklewright and Andrea Brandolini

Book Review | Measuring Poverty Around the World by Anthony B. Atkinson, edited by John Micklewright and Andrea Brandolini

The meticulous and passionate editorial work of John Micklewright and Andrea Brandolini has enabled the publication of Measuring Poverty Around the World, a posthumous opus from Anthony B. Atkinson, a leading and inspirational authority in the field of poverty and inequality. This book demonstrates the strength of Atkinson’s legacy for future generations of poverty scholars and underscores how the centrality of poverty to the political debate makes its measurement both a vital and delicate task, writes Roberto Iacono.

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