Strategic voting and non-voting in Spanish elections Articles uri icon

publication date

  • September 2013

start page

  • 738

end page

  • 749


  • 5


  • 21

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1354-0688


  • The literature on strategic voting has provided evidence that some electors support large parties at the voting booth to
    avoid wasting their vote on a preferred but uncompetitive smaller party. In this paper we argue that district conditions also
    elicit reactions from abstainers and other party voters. We find that, when ballot gains and losses from different types of
    responses to the constituency conditions are taken into account, large parties still benefit moderately from strategic
    behaviour, while small parties obtain substantial net ballot losses. This result stems from a model that allows for
    abstention in the choice set of voters, and uses counterfactual simulation to estimate the incidence of district conditions
    in the Spanish general elections of 2000 and 2008.


  • Politics


  • voting; strategic voting; contextual effects; proportional electoral systems; abstention