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Author: Cameron Ross

Building on earlier work, this text combines theoretical perspectives with empirical work, to provide a comparative analysis of the electoral systems, party systems and governmental systems in the ethnic republics and regions of Russia. It also assesses the impact of these different institutional arrangements on democratization and federalism, moving the focus of research from the national level to the vitally important processes of institution building and democratization at the local level and to the study of federalism in Russia.

Crafting authoritarian regimes in Russia’s regions and republics
Cameron Ross

shield in their quest to consolidate their various brands of authoritarianism. Moreover, the greater the degree of autonomy given to a federal subject in Russia the greater the degree of authoritarianism we find. Below we discuss the various ways in which presidents and governors have been able to gain a dominant control over their political systems. In particular, we examine the way in which leaders of the ethnic republics have been able to maintain power by manipulating the electoral system. Sartori has described the electoral system as the most specific manipulative

in Federalism and democratisation in Russia
Regional elections and political parties
Cameron Ross

democracy has been further consolidated by a third round of regional elections conducted over the period 1999–2001. Manipulation of the electoral system However, the cynical nature in which President Yeltsin manipulated the election process in the regions has done much to damage the develop- FAD6 10/17/2002 5:45 PM Page 93 Regional elections and political parties 93 ment of a democratic political culture. Yeltsin’s victory over the parliamentarians signalled a victory of executive power over legislative power which eventually led to the development of a semi

in Federalism and democratisation in Russia
Open Access (free)
Cameron Ross

and Southern Europe. From my reading of this literature three major schools can be identified. One school has focused on the preconditions necessary for the emergence of stable democracy: 1 modernisation, industrialisation, urbanisation, education, capitalism and wealth;2 2 the nature of classes and the class structure, with a focus on the positive role of the bourgeoisie or the proletariat;3 3 a democratic political culture and civil society;4 4 the importance of institutional factors,5 electoral systems,6 type of regime – parliamentary or presidential,7 the

in Federalism and democratisation in Russia
Open Access (free)
Transgressing the cordon sanitaire: understanding the English Defence League as a social movement
Hilary Pilkington

support for such parties2 in the UK did not rise above 1 per cent until 2010–12; even then, at 1.8 per cent, support remained well below that in neighbouring countries such as France (13.6 per cent) and The Netherlands (12.7 per cent) (Minkenberg, 2013: 20). The reasons for this are explored in more nuanced ways by others (see Goodwin, 2011a) but might be summarised as resulting from a combination of: the first-past-the-post electoral system, which significantly reduces the incentive to vote for candidates with little chance of securing victory in a given constituency

in Loud and proud
Executive versus legislative power
Cameron Ross

actors in crafting democracy or bolstering authoritarian regimes. Here democratic elites are necessary for democracy. In Russia the founding charters and constitutions (‘rules of the game’) FAD7 10/17/2002 6:01 PM Page 133 Executive versus legislative power 133 emerged out of elite conflict in the regions. Political elites struggled to create the rules (e.g., a presidential or parliamentary system, a unitary or federal system, a majoritarian, proportional, or mixed type of electoral system) so that they could win the game. Moreover, elites are liable to be more

in Federalism and democratisation in Russia
Cameron Ross

Constitutional asymmetry created political asymmetry. Before long there was a multitude of differing political systems operating in the Russian Federation including different types of political regime (presidential or parliamentary); electoral systems (proportional, majoritarian or mixed); and party systems. Across the federation we could soon detect a political spectrum running from partial democratisation at one end to delegative democracies and outright dictatorships at the other. However, one universal rule could be detected – the greater the autonomy granted to a federal

in Federalism and democratisation in Russia