Parliamentary Political Representation

  • Fabiola Mota


This chapter analyzes the way MPs conceive their representative role at parliaments and it is compared to citizens’ opinion and preferences about the representative political function. It applies the analytical model put forward by Rehfeld (2009, 2011), which distinguishes three dimensions—aims of legislation, source of judgments and responsiveness to sanctions—for empirically observing the normative antithesis between delegate and independent representation. This chapter confirms the existence among the Spanish MPs of four main modes of understanding the political representation: the “Burkean trustees”, the “bureaucrats”, the “volunteers” and the “Madisonian legislators”. The MP’s political party, rather than the parliament where she works, appears as the main determinant of the type of parliamentary representation. This finding is important in order to understand the discrepancy between MPs and the general public as regard the understanding of the representative link.


Crisis of representation Modes of political representation Responsiveness Responsibility 


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fabiola Mota
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political Science and IRUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain

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