Political extremism and distrust: Does radical political orientation predict political distrust and negative attitudes towards European integration?

Yordan Kutiyski*, A.P.M. Krouwel, J.W. van Prooijen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Institutional and political distrust are often associated with the improved electoral performance of extremist parties. This study analyses to what extent political distrust and Euroscepticism are associated with extreme left and right ideological positions. We specifically examine voters in the Netherlands – a country with wide array of political parties spanning a broad ideological spectrum. The study utilises probability samples from the Dutch National Election Survey and the European Election Studies, as well as opt-in samples collected through Vote Advice Applications (VAAs), amounting to a total of 20,548 analysed respondents. By employing hierarchical regression analyses, we find that across multiple elections at the national and European level, both radical left and radical right respondents are more prone to be politically distrustful and Eurosceptic, than respondents who profess a centrist political ideology. In addition, our analyses suggest that distrust and Euroscepticism can be explained by respondents’ party preference.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalSocial Science Journal
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Feb 2020

Keywords

  • Euroskepticism
  • European integration
  • populism
  • Extremism
  • voter behavior

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