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Coalition Dynamics and the Changing German Party System

Lees, C. ORCID: 0000-0002-3517-2211 (2010). Coalition Dynamics and the Changing German Party System. German Politics and Society, 28(3), pp. 119-132. doi: 10.3167/gps.2010.280307


The article draws upon the formal coalition literature to demonstrate that party system change over the last thirty years means that the Volksparteien enjoy more coalition options and greater ideological leverage within coalitions that form than was the case in the past. The Free Democrats have lost their kingmaker status and the distribution of party weights over recent elections allows no other small party to act in this manner. By contrast, the numerical and ideological resources possessed by the two Volksparteien means that they remain the only parties within the German party system that can act as formateur in the coalition game and are less vulnerable to threats of a decisive defection by small parties to alternative coalitions than they were in the past.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedited version of an article published in German Politics & Society. The definitive publisher-authenticated version Lees, C. (2010). Coalition dynamics and the changing German party system. German Politics & Society, 28(3), 119-132 is available online at: © Georgetown University 2010
Publisher Keywords: 1606 Political Science, 2002 Cultural Studies
Subjects: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs
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