Local Elections and the Politics of Small-Scale Democracy

by: J. Eric Oliver - Shang E. Ha - Zachary Callen

Local Elections and the Politics of Small-Scale Democracy

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Author: J. Eric Oliver, Shang E. Ha, Zachary Callen

Publisher: Princeton University Press

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Format: Hardback

Publication date: 03 July 2012

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ISBN: 0691143552 ISBN 13: 9780691143552

Local Elections and the Politics of Small-Scale Democracy by J. Eric Oliver - Shang E. Ha - Zachary Callen

Local government is the hidden leviathan of American politics: it accounts for nearly a tenth of gross domestic product, it collects nearly as much in taxes as the federal government, and its decisions have an enormous impact on Americans' daily lives. This book offers the comprehensive analysis of electoral politics in America's municipalities. Top page

Complete description

Local government is the hidden leviathan of American politics: it accounts for nearly a tenth of gross domestic product, it collects nearly as much in taxes as the federal government, and its decisions have an enormous impact on Americans' daily lives. Yet political scientists have few explanations for how people vote in local elections, particularly in the smaller cities, towns, and suburbs where most Americans live. Drawing on a wide variety of data sources and case studies, this book offers the first comprehensive analysis of electoral politics in America's municipalities. Arguing that current explanations of voting behavior are ill suited for most local contests, Eric Oliver puts forward a new theory that highlights the crucial differences between local, state, and national democracies. Being small in size, limited in power, and largely unbiased in distributing their resources, local governments are "managerial democracies" with a distinct style of electoral politics. Instead of hinging on the partisanship, ideology, and group appeals that define national and state elections, local elections are based on the custodial performance of civic-oriented leaders and on their personal connections to voters with similarly deep community ties. Explaining not only the dynamics of local elections, Oliver's findings also upend many long-held assumptions about community power and local governance, including the importance of voter turnout and the possibilities for grassroots political change. Top page

General info

Publisher & Imprint: Princeton University Press

City: New Jersey

Pages: 240

More info: height 229 mm width 152 mm weight 514 gr thickness 23 mm

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Age recommended: College/higher education

Subject Indexing & Classification Dewey:(DC23) 324.973 Library of Congress Subject: Democracy - United States

Departments: Elections & referenda; Local government;

Record updated at: 26 August, 2014 time: 13:32

Summary Local Elections and the Politics of Small-Scale Democracy Acknowledgments ix Introduction 1 Chapter 1 Size, Scope, and Bias: What Differentiates Local Electoral Politics? 12 Chapter 2 Who Votes in Local Elections? 53 Chapter 3 Who Runs for Local Office? 87 Chapter 4 Systematic versus Idiosyncratic Factors in Local Elections 116 Chapter 5 What Influences Local Voters' Electoral Choices? 149 Chapter 6 Rethinking Local Democracy 183 References 209 Index 215 Top page

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