Download The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of by Thomas Poguntke, Paul Webb PDF

By Thomas Poguntke, Paul Webb

During this significant new paintings, major specialists come jointly to envision the altering function of political events and political management in fourteen smooth democracies. in addition to studying cross-national modifications, The Presidentialization of Politics analyses how sleek democracies are more and more following a presidential good judgment of governance, wherein management is changing into extra crucial and extra strong, but in addition more and more depending on winning attract the mass public.

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Extra info for The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democracies (Comparative Politics)

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How far are leaders constrained by colleagues and parties (their own and those of coalition partners) in the decisions they implement? Has there been any discernible shift over time? Institutional, procedural, and resource changes are important in this regard. Have the formal powers of the head of government been enhanced or restricted over time? Has the informal exercise of these powers altered? Have the financial resources or personnel at the disposal of the head of government developed? How far have non-constitutional factors such as change in the party system affected the exercise of leadership power in government?

The evidence for this is reviewed by Burch and Holliday (1999: 43) who claim that: . . an executive office in all but name already exists. It centres on the Prime Minister’s and Cabinet Offices, and has been crucially developed since the 1960s . . there is now substantial institutional capacity in its two component Offices, and the potential for actors within them to exercise power has been enhanced . . Quietly and without publicity, indeed in an evolutionary manner that is typically British, there has been a transformation of the centre of the state.

Nevertheless, while we may admire the insight of observers like Musgrove, it is clear that such judgements must have been impressionistic, if not to say downright speculative, at the time they were made. Bear in mind that they were articulated in the decade in which television was still emerging in many European countries as the major source of political information, and in which processes of cleavage change were less clear-cut than they have since become. We have incomparably more evidence on which to draw now in terms of our dependent and independent variables.

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