Political parties are one of the core institutions of democracy. But in democracies around the world, there is growing evidence of low or declining public confidence in parties. But are they in decline, or are they simply changing their forms and functions?
The triumph of far-right populist Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil’s October 2018 presidential election was made possible by a series of economic, social, and political crises that have shaken Brazilian democracy.
Charges that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party threaten liberal-democratic safeguards are best understood as the overheated reaction of an insular elite that is still struggling to come to terms with its democratic displacement from power.
In the world’s largest democracy, liberalism is in retreat, as evidenced by a pattern of assaults on minorities, press freedom, and the independence of key cultural and intellectual institutions.
Colombian voters turned against the architects of the peace accord ending the country’s decades-old internal war, while giving the presidency to a lieutenant of ex-president Uribe, the agreement’s leading opponent.
Long hailed as one of the region’s most vigorous democracies, this small Central American country has seen voters swing massively toward newcomers and away from the two traditionally dominant parties.
AMLO’s sweeping victory in Mexico’s 2018 elections could point to a long-term dealignment of the country’s party system, but it is more likely that a less radical process of partisan recomposition will take place.
Democracy is enduring in Latin America, but it cannot be said to be prospering. Illiberalism and polarization are rising. Yet core democratic institutions remain firmly in place, and therein lies hope.
A disconnect between Bolivia’s old party system and the country’s deeper social-cleavage structure led to a massive shift in politics there. What lessons might be drawn for other nations?
Less than two years after an extremely close presidential election, the supporters of Keiko Fujimori took advantage of a corruption scandal to cut short the presidency of Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.