Comparative European Politics

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 1–17 | Cite as

European Union issue voting in East and West Europe: The role of political context

  • Catherine E de VriesEmail author
  • Erik R Tillman
Original Article


Recent research has shown the rise of domestic contention over European integration. This paper examines the extent to which preferences over European integration influence domestic party support in 19 European Union (EU) member states in West and East-Central Europe (ECE). The analysis finds broad evidence of EU issue voting across the countries included in the analysis, but the effect of the EU issue on party preferences is stronger in ECE. These results are consistent with the view that the same underlying causal dynamics explain party and voter behavior in both West and ECE, but the post-communist legacy shapes the political and economic contexts in the ECE states, resulting in predictable differences between the two regions.


elections, voting behavior, European integration, East-Central Europe, West Europe 



Catherine E. de Vries acknowledges the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) for providing financial support for this research (VENI GRANT 451-08-001). Earlier versions of this paper were presented at the 2007 Meeting of the MPSA in Chicago and the 2007 ECPR General in Pisa. The authors would like to thank all participants for their input. Remaining errors are the sole responsibility of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of Nebraska-LincolnLincolnUSA

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