This article deals with the comparative research of electoral fraud. It is focused on the approaches to detection and measurement of electoral fraud and on the question what are the limits and possibilities of data collection for comparative research. In the first part of this article, a brief definition of electoral fraud is introduced together with the classification of forms electoral fraud may take. Second part presents brief overview of existing approaches to detecting and measuring of electoral fraud. The third part focuses on the reports of international election observation missions as they seem to be relevant source for data collection for comparative research on electoral fraud and manipulation. Advantages and disadvantages of such source are discussed.
Keywords: Comparative research; electoral fraud; data collection; election observation.
Citizens of ten Norwegian municipalities were given an opportunity to cast thein votes over the Internet in the 2011 municipal and regional elections. The elections gave rise to many expectations. One of them was related to turnout: the Internet voting was hoped to boost voter turnout. Hence, the aim of this article was to analyse the impact of the new voting method on turnout in general as well as on turnout of first-time voters. In addition, some observers expected significantly higher share of first-time voters among those who cast their votes over the Internet. The analysis lead to the following conclusions: a) the Internet voting had negligible effect on general turnout, b) no evidence was found to support the idea of higher turnout among first-time voters due to the possibility of Internet voting, and c) the proportion of first-time voters among Internet voters was (perhaps surprisingly) lower in comparison to most other age cohorts.
Keywords: Norway, turnout, internet voting, municipal elections.
The democracy offers citizens many opportunities to participate in their own governance. One of them, voting, is often introduced as the lifeblood of the representative democracies. But in past few decades, the problem of low turnout has arisen. In my article, I discuss the issue of growing abstention from the institutional perspective. The rational choice theorists have suggested that people who chose not to vote were acting rationally in that the costs associated with voting (such as rearranging work schedules, getting to the polls, and gathering information on the candidates) appeared to outweigh the benefits (influencing the outcome of an election or gaining the satisfaction of being a good citizen). Here, I assume that lowering the costs can bring significant turnout increase. As the Estonian example has shown, the interesting institutional tool for reducing the expense of casting a ballot might be electronic voting. In the Czech Republic, e-voting has been already used as a source of legitimacy of academic self-government or as a useful tool of intra-party democracy. But meanwhile, the potential of e-voting in national or local elections was not sufficiently utilized.
Keywords: Voter turnout, cost of voting, e-voting, institutionalism.
The article deals with a connection between constitutional power of the president in the political system and election turnout in the presidential and parliamentary elections in the former communist states. The aim of this paper is to confirm/falsify the thesis that with the decreasing constitutional power of the president fall the turnout in the presidential election and vice versa. For this purpose author use quantitative method of L. K. Metcalf and modifies the method of R. Dinkel. In conclusion the author claims that it is not possible to confirm above mentioned connection and it is preferable to observe the real power of the president.
Keywords: President, election, election turnout, former communist states.
This article analyses main and secondary poles in party system of German Länder after 1989. It includes an overview of the Länder elections results and the Länder coalitions. There are presentated other political parties in each Länder parliament too. Main and secondary poles of party system are discussed after this.
Keywords: German Länder, main pole, secondary pole, party system.
The 2012 presidential election in Finland ended up the era of social democratic presidents in Finland which beginning dates back to 1982 when Mannu Koivistu took over the presidential function from the long-serving legend of Finnish politics Urho Kekkonen. The victory of Sauli Niinistö, who beat his challenger Pekka Haavisto from the Green League by a record margin, confirmed the position of the conservative party as the strongest party player in Finland. The humiliating defeat of the former prime minister Paavo Lipponen showed that the Finnish social democracy might face serious challenges in the future. The article presents a description of the results of the elections with specific attention paid to the electoral campaign, geographic distribution of votes and interpretation of the support of individual candidates. The paper also examines the amendment to the constitution which came into force in March 2012 and introduced a further weakening of the position of the head of the state in the political system of Finland.
Keywords: Finland, elections, president, Sauli Niinistö, Pekka Haavisto.
This article deals with the 2012 presidential election in Iceland. This elections were interesting for two reasons. Firstly, the elections were interesting as the number of candidates who have decided to run the contest. In the history of Icelandic presidential elections, there were sectled the convention that when the current president decides to continue his/her mandate, he/she is not exposed to the direct contest with other candidates. Finally, second interesting question is associated with the role that the Icelandic president should play in the political system. This question came to the fore after incumbent President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson have used, as the first Icelan- dic president in history, his constitutionally guaranteed right to veto legislation. The article describes electoral system and analyses election results, considering territorial support of the two main presidential candidiates, the focus is also given to the campaign and the electoral preferences.
Keywords: Iceland, presidential election, Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, political parties, party system.