Process or Candidate: The International Community and the Demand for Electoral Integrity
by Johannes Bubeck, University of Mannheim, and Nikolay Marinov, University of Mannheim
Rumored Russian support for candidates in U.S. elections has a long history, exceeded only by the history of American interventions. New data shows such interventions are common in international affairs: one of three elections have them. Furthermore, while rooting for local allies, outsiders try to change the rules under which the local game of democracy is played. In a new paper in the APSR, Bubeck and Marinov from the University of Mannheim show why and when states support other candidates, and what that does to democracy. The authors argue that candidate and process interventions are often complements: investing in one furthers the payoff from the other. An extension outlines how local allies change their policy positions to suit a foreign sponsor. Such change is least likely when equally powerful states intervene on opposing sides in the domestic political game. These situations, termed ‘election wars’, can be worst for democracy and for the outside powers themselves.