In 2005, the single nontransferable vote system for legislative elections in Taiwan was replaced by a mixed-member majoritarian system, with an accompanying reduction in available district seats. In theory, by increasing the threshold of exclusion and placing the power of nomination in the hands of political parties, this reform should reduce vote-buying and local factionalism. We collected data on legislative nominees charged with vote-buying and on the local factional ties of candidates. Our results suggest that the reforms did reduce these problems. First, comparing the proportion of candidates charged with vote-buying before and after the reform shows a decrease in the second and third post-reform elections. Second, factional status predicts a candidate’s likelihood of running in consecutive elections before the reform but not after. Differences between factional and nonfactional candidates ceased to be significant after the reform, revealing the decreasing relevance of factions.
The Elephant in the Voting Booth?: Assessing the Effect of the 2005 Taiwanese Electoral Reform in Reducing Vote-Buying and Local Factional Politics
Chung-li Wu, the corresponding author, is a Research Fellow and Director at the Institute of Political Science, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan. His current research interests are American politics, comparative politics, urban and minority politics, and electoral studies. He is the author of articles in Party Politics, China Quarterly, Asian Survey, Parliamentary Affairs, Political Studies Review, Social Science Quarterly, International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, Japanese Journal of Political Science, Journal of Black Studies, and other professional journals. The authors acknowledge with gratitude the helpful advice of the anonymous reviewers and the editor of this journal. Email: <email@example.com>.
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Ted Hsuan Yun Chen, Chung-Li Wu; The Elephant in the Voting Booth?: Assessing the Effect of the 2005 Taiwanese Electoral Reform in Reducing Vote-Buying and Local Factional Politics. Asian Survey 1 August 2021; 61 (4): 641–662. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/as.2021.61.4.641
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