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Economic Performance and Political Outcomes: An Analysis of the 1995 Turkish Parliamentary Election Results


  • Ali T. Akarca
  • Aysit Tansel

    () (Department of Economics, METU)


1995 Turkish parliamentary election was held almost under the conditions of a controlled experiment. The unique cross-section data pertaining to this election and the economic and political conditions surrounding it were utilized to study the relationship between the government’s economic performance and the vote shares of political parties. Turkish voters are found to be myopic, not looking back beyond the election year in assessing the government’s economic performance. A good performance is found to benefit the primary incumbent party at the expense of extremist opposition parties and a bad performance is found to benefit extremist opposition parties at the expense of the primary party in power. The junior party in a coalition government and the centrist opposition parties appear to be unaffected by the economic conditions. Evidence found is consistent with a strategic voting by the electorate, to diffuse power and/or to try parties and leaders that were not tried before or last tried a long time ago. These conclusions are essentially in conformity with the literature on other countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ali T. Akarca & Aysit Tansel, 2004. "Economic Performance and Political Outcomes: An Analysis of the 1995 Turkish Parliamentary Election Results," ERC Working Papers 0401, ERC - Economic Research Center, Middle East Technical University, revised Jan 2004.
  • Handle: RePEc:met:wpaper:0401

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alesina, A. & Londregan, J.A. & Rosenthal, H., 1990. "A Model Of The Political Economy Of The United States," GSIA Working Papers 1990-27, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
    2. Grier, Kevin B & McGarrity, Joseph P, 2002. "Presidential Party, Incumbency, and the Effects of Economic Fluctuations on House Elections, 1916-1996," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 110(1-2), pages 143-162, January.
    3. Fair, Ray C, 1978. "The Effect of Economic Events on Votes for President," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 159-173, May.
    4. Richard C. K. Burdekin, 1988. "Economic Performance and the Determination of Presidential Elections in the U.S," The American Economist, Sage Publications, vol. 32(2), pages 71-75, October.
    5. Peltzman, Sam, 1987. "Economic Conditions and Gubernatorial Elections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(2), pages 293-297, May.
    6. Alesina, Alberto & Londregan, John, 1993. "A Model of the Political Economy of the United States," Scholarly Articles 4552529, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    7. Alesina, Alberto & Londregan, John & Rosenthal, Howard, 1996. "The 1992, 1994 and 1996 Elections: A Comment and a Forecast," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 88(1-2), pages 115-125, July.
    8. repec:cup:apsrev:v:83:y:1989:i:02:p:373-398_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Rosenthal, Howard & Alesina, Alberto, 1989. "Partisan Cycles in Congressional Elections and the Macroeconomy," Scholarly Articles 4553031, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    10. Alberto Alesina & Howard Rosenthal, 1988. "Partisan Cycles in Congressional Elections and the Macroeconomy," NBER Working Papers 2706, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. repec:cup:apsrev:v:87:y:1993:i:01:p:12-33_09 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Cited by:

    1. Cem BASLEVENT, "undated". "Party Preferences and Economic Voting in Turkey (Now That the Crisis is Over)," Middle East and North Africa 330400008, EcoMod.

    More about this item


    Turkey; election;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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