Electoral Politics in Post-1997 Hong Kong: Protest, by Stan Hok-Wui Wong

By Stan Hok-Wui Wong

This ebook bargains a unique and parsimonious framework to assist comprehend Hong Kong’s long democratic transition by way of studying the electoral dynamics of the city’s aggressive authoritarian political process, the place pro-Beijing and pro-democracy events have struggled to maintain one another in fee. the writer demonstrates how a comparatively liberal media surroundings has formed the electoral incentives of the competition and the pro-establishment elite otherwise, which has helped the latter increase its foundation of electoral aid. The political clarification the booklet places ahead seeks to shed new gentle on why many autocracies have an interest in on a regular basis preserving elections which are thought of just a little aggressive. This booklet may be of serious curiosity not just to experts in comparative reviews of democratization, but additionally to all these all in favour of Hong Kong’s democratic transition.

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Extra info for Electoral Politics in Post-1997 Hong Kong: Protest, Patronage, and the Media

Example text

They explain that this is because at this education level, people are knowledgeable enough to be exposed to the regime’s propaganda, but not sufficiently sophisticated to differentiate propaganda from the political reality. That said, one cannot rule out the possibility that some citizens may genuinely support the ruling party even in the absence of propaganda; they may simply approve of its leadership and economic programs. This leads to the next assumption: Assumption 5 Voters in authoritarian regimes can have different ideological affinities.

6 Voters are not always motivated by positive reinforcement, however. The PRI dictatorship of Mexico is again a case in point. Diaz-Cayeros et al. (2003) and Fox and Hernández (1995) show that the ruling party punished disloyal constituencies by cutting government funding. Although fear of the ruling elite’s retaliation may also explain why voters bother voting at all, using punishment to guarantee electoral victory is arguably an authoritarian government’s last resort. There are many less obtrusive and less costly tricks to prevent constituencies from defecting to the opposition such as redrawing the constituency boundaries to merge disloyal constituencies into loyal ones.

Paradoxically, proestablishment parties, namely, those supporting the status quo, have been receiving ever-increasing public support in popular elections. In the introduction to this book, I outline an explanation to this puzzle. In this chapter, I formalize the discussion by providing an analytical model, which involves the interaction between four major stakeholders pertaining to authoritarian elections: the incumbent, the opposition, the media, and the voters. The model focuses on the scenario when the cost of imposing media controls is too high for an authoritarian government.

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