Scientific article
Open access

Nomination trade-offs: How context affects political parties’ strategies to nominate immigrant-origin candidates

ContributorsNadler, Anna-Lenaorcid
Published inParty politics, p. p.1-17
First online date2021-09-15

Political parties in Western democracies with large immigrant populations have become increasingly interested in nominating immigrant-origin candidates. This paper investigates how contextual factors explain parties’ effort of immigrant representation. I argue that nominations of immigrant-origin candidates are shaped by parties’ strategic calculations weighing out potential vote gains among immigrant-origin voters compared to a potential native backlash. I contend that alien enfranchisement and liberal naturalization policies provide decisive incentives to nominate immigrant-origin candidates. In contrast, economic insecurity implies potential material threat perceptions generating a native backlash against immigrants, reducing the nomination of immigrant-origin candidates. Using a novel dataset on candidates in Switzerland, the analysis reveals that the political and economic contexts indeed determine the number of immigrant-origin candidates and their ballot position, particularly those of non-Western origin. These findings have significant implications for our understanding of strategic behaviors of political parties and the promotion of immigrant representation.

  • Immigration
  • Party strategies
  • Political candidates
Citation (ISO format)
NADLER, Anna-Lena. Nomination trade-offs: How context affects political parties’ strategies to nominate immigrant-origin candidates. In: Party politics, 2021, p. p.1–17.
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
  • PID : unige:159777
ISSN of the journal1354-0688

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