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CONTEXTUAL INFLUENCES AND THE DUTCH REJECTION OF THE EU CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY: UNDERSTANDING MUNICIPALITY DIFFERENCES

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ABSTRACT

In this paper we study the Dutch rejection of the Constitutional Treaty during the 2005 referendum by comparing the outcomes among the Dutch municipalities. This approach is ideally suited to illustrate the importance of contextual influences on voting outcomes. In addition, it gives excellent statistical opportunities to re‐analyse some of the hypotheses used in previous studies. Based on the existing literature we developed six hypotheses that describe a relationship between the strength of the no vote and the context that shapes voter choice. All hypotheses were in line with our expectations, indicating that contextual influences did matter. In addition, we investigated the relationship between the turnout rate and the referendum outcome. The Treaty was more firmly rejected in municipalities in which the turnout rate was higher.
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Document Type: Research Article

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Publication date: 2011-09-01

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