Constituency interests without constituencies: The geographical impact of candidate selection on party organization and legislative behavior in the 14th Israeli Knesset, 1996-99

Reuven Y. Hazan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Israeli political system has recently undergone dramatic and significant structural changes, including the introduction of a new method of candidate selection known as primaries. This article focuses on this new method of candidate selection, which drastically reshaped the connection between the parties and their members, their voters and their representatives, and as a result completely undermined the organizational infrastructure of the parties that adopted primaries. This article describes the reforms that were enacted, assesses their ramifications and focuses on the geographical significance of the innovative aspect of constituency representation by individual parliamentarians, which the primaries injected into the unitary political parties, electoral system and political infrastructure in Israel during the 14th Knesset, 1996-99. In doing so, this article points to a lacuna in the political science literature concerning the relevance and consequences of candidate selection--i.e. intra-party elections--on political geography. The article argues that intra-party electoral reform is not only significant, but, from a political geography perspective, can prove to be as meaningful and consequential as systemic electoral reform.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)791-811
Number of pages21
JournalPolitical Geography
Volume18
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1999

Keywords

  • Candidate selection
  • Constituencies
  • Elections
  • Electoral reform
  • Israel
  • Political parties

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