Local Parties in Political and Organizational Perspective

By Martin Saiz; Hans Geser | Go to book overview

systems correlate with more heterogeneous populations. Yet the potentially fragmenting effects of national ideologies on the local political culture was deflected by the local issue orientation. National parties in federal countries appear not to feel the effects of fragmentation because politics in these countries is bifurcated between local and national issues. The studies of Germany and, to a lesser extent, the United States show that party elites can maintain local support from above and that local politics need not address divisive national issues. The Canadian case is instructive because of the near absence of national partisan influence. Local social movements, it seems, provide an inadequate base from which to mount a durable challenge to an agenda dominated by physical development. Only in Switzerland did it seem possible for lower-level parties to impact national politics. Why this is the case in federal Switzerland is a mystery, but we suspect that it is caused by the influence of strong central-local partisan networks. Proportional representation encourages not only political diversity but allows for easy maintenance of a national presence. Such national-local linkages encourage the communication of political information up and down the partisan ladder. This, together with the country's long-standing commitment to local autonomy, results in a larger marketplace for political ideas, both locally and nationally.


References

Key, V. O. Jr. 1949. Southern Politics. New York: Vintage.

Madison, James, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay. 1966. The Federalist Papers. New Rochelle, N.Y.: Arlington House.

Schattsneider, E. E. 1960. The Semisovereign People. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.

-334-

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Local Parties in Political and Organizational Perspective
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contents vii
  • Tables and Figures ix
  • Part One - Theoretical Orientation and Empirical Observations 1
  • 1 - The Local Party as an Object of Interdisciplinary Comparative Study 3
  • Notes 37
  • References 39
  • 2 - Local Political Parties in Comparative Perspective 44
  • Notes 70
  • References 71
  • Part Two - Local Political Parties in Local and National Context 75
  • Notes 98
  • References 98
  • 4 - Local Parties in England 101
  • Notes 121
  • 5 - Local Parties in the German Countryside 123
  • Notes 149
  • References 149
  • 6 - Local Parties and Electioneering in Germany 151
  • Notes 169
  • References 169
  • 7 - Do Political Parties Matter in U.S. Cities? 171
  • Notes 189
  • 8 - Forms of Patronage and Political Parties in the Italian City 191
  • Notes 210
  • References 211
  • 9 - Local Parties in Switzerland 213
  • Notes 239
  • 10 - Local Party Organizations in Denmark 242
  • Notes 269
  • References 270
  • 11 - The Local Party System in Poland 273
  • References 281
  • 12 from Communist Predominance to Multiparty System 283
  • Notes 306
  • Part Three - Conclusion 311
  • References 334
  • Appendix: - Synopsis of Hypotheses 335
  • Index 339
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