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The Economic and Electoral Consequences of Austerity Policies in Britain

Whiteley, PF and Clarke, HD and Sanders, D and Stewart, MC (2014) The Economic and Electoral Consequences of Austerity Policies in Britain. UNSPECIFIED.

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Abstract

The aim of this paper is to examine the relationship between electoral support and the economy over the period 2004 to 2014, paying particular attention to the impact of the economic strategy pursued by the Coalition government in Britain since the general election in May 2010. This involves modelling the relationship between voting intentions, perceptions of economic performance, and a variety of other variables using survey data collected each month from 2004. The evidence shows that when Labour was in office, support for the party was strongly influenced by the state of the economy, as was support for the opposition parties. However, since the Coalition came to power, the relationship between the economy and political support has changed, with neither the Conservatives nor the Liberal Democrats gaining from a fairly rapid growth in economic optimism which has taken place since early 2013. The paper explains this change in terms of a growing perception among the public that none of the major parties can effectively manage Britain?s economic problems. It is also the case that optimism about the national economy has not significantly percolated down to the level of the individual voter. So individuals may be more optimistic about the future of the national economy but they are still being badly affected by the recession.

Item Type: Other
Uncontrolled Keywords: Economic Voting; Austerity Policies
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
Depositing User: Paul Whiteley
Date Deposited: 02 May 2014 10:14
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2017 17:52
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/9334

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