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Hiroki Takeuchi (Southern Methodist University), Keely McNeme (Southern Methodist University), “Comparative One-Party Rule: Japan and Mexico Compared”

May 18 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EDT

U.S. ET: May 18 (Thursday), 8 – 9 PM

JST: May 19 (Friday), 9 – 10 AM

Zoom Registration: Link

Paper is available here.

Authors: Hiroki Takeuchi (Southern Methodist University) and Keely McNeme (Southern Methodist University)

A critical aspect of democracies is the peaceful transition of power between multiple parties through fair and free elections. Although a
party may remain in power for subsequent terms, decades of staying in power typically indicate a rigged electoral system. Japan and
Mexico in the twentieth century offer two interesting cases. A single party dominated both for several decades—Japan by the Liberal
Democratic Party (LDP) from 1955 to 2009 while Mexico by the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) from 1929 to 2000—but Japan was
classified as a democracy while Mexico was classified as authoritarianism. Both the LDP and the PRI were known for electoral
clientelism and corruption. Given the surface-level similarities of one-party rule between these two countries, what makes these different
classifications? Moreover, after experiencing the loss of power in the twenty-first century, the LDP is still the dominant party in Japanese
politics, while the PRI is not in Mexican politics anymore now that both are classified as electoral democracies. What explains the
divergent trajectories taken by these two former one-party ruling parties?

Presenters: Hiroki Takeuchi (Southern Methodist University) and Keely McNeme (Southern Methodist University)

Discussants: Masaaki Higashijima (University of Tokyo) and Len Schoppa (University of Virginia)

Chair: Charles Crabtree (Dartmouth College)


May 18
8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EDT