Elisabeth Carter
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The institutional environment
in The extreme right in Western Europe
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This chapter deals with the effects of contextual factors and explores the influence of electoral institutions on the right-wing extremist party vote. The district magnitude of an electoral system refers to the number of representatives elected in a district. It is suggested that district magnitude and legal thresholds are important in helping to account for the disparity in the electoral scores of the right-wing extremist parties in proportional electoral systems. The lack of a clear relationship between the electoral formula used and the right-wing extremist party vote is somewhat surprising. Other electoral laws, including rules relating to ballot access, media access and the receipt of state subventions, affect the ability of parties to run campaigns and to compete in elections. It is also shown that low ballot access requirements, low media access requirements, and low state subvention access requirements together make for more successful right-wing extremist parties.

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