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Political Corruption, Economic Performance, and Electoral Outcomes: A Cross-National Analysis

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This article deals with a particular concern in the political corruption literature that is the possible influence of political corruption on electoral outcomes. The study finds that political corruption becomes a formative electoral factor when the regime in question fails to sustain sufficient levels of economic growth, and therefore political corruption is not a significant factor when the regimes manage to sustain sufficient levels of economic growth. The authors sustain their argument through the results of an empirical test conducted on the effects of political corruption in elections (legislative elections held between 2000 and 2008) across 115 countries identified as non-western developing nations and western countries experiencing the third wave of democratization. The results are contrasted with ‘consolidated democracies’ where it is argued that strong democratic norms and values alongside high levels of economic development make it easier to vote out corrupt behaviors.

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Contemporary Politics