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Mixed-Member Electoral SystemsThe Best of Both Worlds?$
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Matthew Soberg Shugart and Martin P. Wattenberg

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199257683

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/019925768X.001.0001

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The Political Consequences of Germany's Mixed‐Member System: Personalization at the Grass Roots?

The Political Consequences of Germany's Mixed‐Member System: Personalization at the Grass Roots?

Chapter:
(p.279) 13 The Political Consequences of Germany's Mixed‐Member System: Personalization at the Grass Roots?
Source:
Mixed-Member Electoral Systems
Author(s):

Hans‐Dieter Klingemann

Bernhard Wessels

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/019925768X.003.0014

Addresses the question of the relevance the German mixed‐member electoral system has for the party system and for candidate vote, and argues that the mixed‐member electoral system does indeed live up to its German moniker of ‘personalized proportional representation’, in that it provides at once individualized representation of geographic constituencies and proportionality. The analysis proceeds in four steps and discusses the impact of the electoral system on the interparty and intraparty dimensions. The first two sections deal with the impact of the electoral system (a) on the party system, and (b) on voting behavior, with special attention to ticket‐splitting. The third and fourth sections deal with (a) candidate selection and opportunity structures as shaped by the electoral system and the parties, and (b) the likelihood of a district performance‐based personal vote for members of parliament. Concludes with a confrontation of the normative expectations of the founding fathers and empirical reality and speculates about the future of the German party system.

Keywords:   candidate selection, electoral reform, electoral systems, Germany, mixed‐member electoral systems, opportunity structures, party system, performance‐based voting, personalized proportional representation, ticket‐splitting, voting behavior

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