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Culture, Political Parties & Voting Behavior: Schuylkill County

Richard L. Kolbe
Polity
Vol. 8, No. 2 (Winter, 1975), pp. 241-268
DOI: 10.2307/3234203
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3234203
Page Count: 28
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Culture, Political Parties & Voting Behavior: Schuylkill County
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Abstract

In Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, the Republican party has dominated in the twentieth century, where the ethnic (Catholic majority) and economic (low income) composition of the population might lead to expectations of Democratic strength. The uniqueness of the particular experience is conveyed, along with implications from and for the literature of parties and elections. In explaining the paradox of Republican success (after a strong nineteenth-century tendency to division on ethnic lines) with a population whose economic interests might reasonably have led them to support Democrats, the individualistic culture of the voters and the consonant laissez faire ideology of the Republicans emerge as significant. One party politics is the consequence, and the effect of an ineffective opposition is considered.

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