Radicalizing electoral system effects on support for nationalist hardliners in Serbia

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Abstract

This paper investigates electoral outcomes produced by the two-round majority system in ethnically divided societies. Earlier studies, focused mainly on the Southern American states, have revealed that in ethnically mixed environments, competitors with radical positions on ethnic issues perform particularly well. This paper extends this idea to municipal elections in Serbia, showing how radical majority nationalist parties exhibit particularly strong performances in ethnically mixed municipalities. While this effect is also apparent under proportional representation, we argue that it is much stronger when a two-round majority vote system is employed.

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