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Advancing Electoral Integrity$
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Pippa Norris, Richard W. Frank, and Ferran Martinez i Coma

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199368709

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199368709.001.0001

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Electoral Trust in Latin America

Electoral Trust in Latin America

Chapter:
(p.229) 12 Electoral Trust in Latin America
Source:
Advancing Electoral Integrity
Author(s):

Arturo Maldonado

Mitchell A. Seligson

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199368709.003.0012

This chapter examines the emergence of the third wave of democratization in Latin America and the Caribbean, where elections have rapidly become more routinized and institutionalized so that, with the sole exception of Cuba, regular competitive elections are now the norm. Citizens' trust in election, however, is a different matter; it shows a widespread lack of confidence but also sharp differences across Latin American countries. This study examines individual- and contextual-level factors that explain differences in trust in elections across the Americas. In particular, it focuses on contrasts among winners and losers, which is a strong predictor of trust in elections. Moreover, the winners-losers gap is contingent on the level of democracy, as measured by Freedom House. The gap is found to shrink in more democratic countries, suggesting that, as democracy deepens, this strengthens trust in electoral institutions. The chapter also tests whether the gap between winners and losers erodes over time, finding some evidence to support this expectation. Finally, the study analyzes whether the gap between winners and losers is smaller in countries where there is alternation in power, and it finds evidence to support this argument.

Keywords:   democratization, latin America, Caribbean, Freedom House, power

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