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New article published in The Journal of Politics

Dominik Duell with Lea Kaftan, Sven-Oliver Proksch, Jonathan Slapin, and Christopher Wratil on "Communicating the Rift: Voter Perceptions of Intra-Party Dissent in Parliaments"

Duell, D., (2022), "Communicating the Rift: Voter Perceptions of Intra-Party Dissent in Parliaments", The Journal of Politics,


MPs who vote against their party can improve their public standing.  But how do MPsexplain and frame their rebellious behavior to maximize their appeal? And what can partyleaders do to mitigate the damage done by intra-party dissent?  Using a vignette surveyexperiment fielded in four European democracies,  we study how statements that MPsand party leaders make about rebellion impact voter evaluations of MPs and leaders. We find that MPs benefit from explaining rebellion in terms of their responsiveness to voters,whereas strategies that highlight the importance of the MP’s own personal convictions areonly effective with respondents who share the rebel’s opinion. In turn, party leaders farebest if they welcome an MP’s rebellious behaviour irrespective of how that MP explainstheir vote.  MP explanations that focus on the substance of a vote and critical responsesfrom party leaders garner substantially less public support.