Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page

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Contents

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p. v

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Preface

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pp. vii-xii

This book is the product of my attempt to broaden my own understanding of how democracy works. I hope that it will broaden the reader’s understanding too. When democracy works well, it produces outcomes—in the form of policies, services, public goods, protections, or some other output—that are beneficial to, and desired by, the citizenry. I refer to the process of generating these outcomes as ...

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Chapter One. What Good Are Elections in Mexico?

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pp. 1-20

... possible by providing mechanisms for popular control, policy responsiveness, or government accountability. Some argue that elections are the only reliable means to these ends and that, accordingly, competitive elections are a sufficient condition for political democracy. 1 But recent research has begun to cast doubt on the ability of ...

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Chapter Two. Elections and Democratic Responsiveness

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pp. 21-52

... in Mexican elections has produced real changes. The PRI has now lost two consecutive presidential elections. Federal and state legislatures are far more plural than they used to be and are more assertive because of it (Beer 2003). And in contrast to the era of PRI dominance, party alternation in power is now a real possibility ...

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Chapter Three. Political Participation and Democratic Responsiveness

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pp. 53-80

... in democratic theory at least since the publication of Schumpeter’s Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy.1 For Schumpeter, democracy’s distinguishing feature is the peaceful competition for power among elites, while the citizenry is relegated to the solitary, almost passive role of voting. As a positive theory of democracy, Schumpeter’s ...

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Chapter Four. Testing Hypotheses about Responsiveness: The Public Services Approach

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pp. 81-118

... about the political causes of democratic responsiveness. According to the first, government is more responsive where elections are more competitive. According to the second, government is more responsive where participation is more frequent. I have also discussed several ways in which the two independent variables in question (electoral ...

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Chapter Five. Testing Hypotheses about Responsiveness: The Public Finance Approach

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pp. 119-146

... findings. With respect to the provision of public services, the available evidence suggests that the primary political source of responsive government is to be found in levels of political participation and engagement. There is very little evidence to support the view that municipal governments are rendered more responsive through mechanisms of ...

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Chapter Six. Electoral and Participatory Mechanisms in Action

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pp. 147-182

... contradicts several common claims about Mexican politics. It is just not possible, given the results of this analysis, to sustain the argument that the rise of electoral competition in Mexican municipalities is generally responsible for significant improvements in the quality of local government. Nor can we maintain that elections ...

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Chapter Seven. Conclusion: The Sources of Democratic Responsiveness in Mexico

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pp. 183-202

The introduction to this book justified the study of politics in Mexican municipalities by appealing to important and unsettled questions about the nature of democratic governance. It then proceeded to delve into the minutiae of municipal politics, offering lengthy discussions on the nature of public utility provision, party politics, citizen governance ...

Appendix Fractionalization Indices as Measures of Electoral Competitiveness

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pp. 203-210

Notes

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pp. 211-232

Works Cited

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pp. 233-248

Index

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pp. 249-253