This study estimates a model of voter choice for the first and second ballots of the 1995 French Presidential election. Its objective is to characterize the relative importance of traditional bases of French voter choice such as social class relative to campaign issues and voter evaluations of the economy. The study also seeks to identify candidate-specific bases of voter choice. Multinomial logit analysis of voter choice among the four leading candidates reveals a stronger role for campaign issues than previous studies suggest. Voter-candidate ideological proximity is the strongest predictor of first and second ballot choice, followed by voter perceptions of candidate ability to address unemployment and political corruption. Demographic variables have limited explanatory power in both the first and second ballot models. The parameter estimates demonstrate considerable differences in the bases of voter choice across candidates, with the bases of voter choice for National Front leader Jean-Marie le Pen most distinct from those of the remaining candidates.
Political Behavior – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 28, 2004
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