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Populism and the erosion of horizontal accountability in Latin America

This article explores which factors enable or hinder populist presidents in Latin America to pursue a radical strategy of institutional change and induce the erosion of horizontal checks and balances. Applying an actor-centred approach, the article focuses focusing on specific constellations in the political arena that shape populist presidents’ incentives and their ability to engage in institutional change. Three conditions are considered to be most decisive: the absence of unified government between the executive and the legislature, the existence of a ‘power vacuum’ in the political arena and the distribution of public support. Using configurational analyses, different causal paths explaining the presence or absence of the erosion of horizontal accountability are identified.

Project Number Democracy Barometer
Author(s) Ruth, Saskia
Series/Publication Political Studies
Year 2017
URL http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0032321717723511?journalCode=psxa&
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