Quality of Government Affect Voter Turnout in the European Regions
While much of the literature on voter turnout focuses on institutional and socioeconomic factors related to the “input” side of the political process, we examine the “output” side of the political process – and advance this field of research by studying the impact of corruption on turnout in the most recent national legislative elections across 172 European regions. Using data from a novel measure of regional quality of government – gauging the quality, impartiality and corruption in government services – and several control variables at the regional and national levels, we find through multi-level modeling that regional quality of government positively impacts regional turnout. In more detail, our results indicate that citizens’ perceptions of the government as partial and corrupt make them, in the aggregate, less likely to cast a ballot.
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