Party government : myth or reality?
Title: Party government : myth or reality?
Author: BLONDEL, Jean
Publisher: Institut für Höhere Studien
Citation: Wien : Institut für Höhere Studien, 1994
Series/Number: Reihe Politikwissenschaft; 1994/20
External link: http://www.ihs.ac.at/publications/pol/pw_20.pdf
The question of the relationship between parties and the governments which they support has not so far been given the attention it deserves. This is surprising from both a normative and an empirical standpoint. The reasons why this question has not been studied so far have probably to do with the notion, held unconsciously but also strongly, that the problem is a simple one. As with all matters which are understudied, there is some tendency to simplify and in this case to believe that parliamentary government, in Western Europe at least, is party government. Yet, as one looks more closely at the problem, the simplicity of the answer begins to vanish. What we therefore need to do, first, is to examine what the expression 'party government' really means. This examination will begin to raise in our minds questions about the validity of the 'idealised concept' of party government. This will lead us to adopt a more sedate view of what party government consists of as well as to notice that there are substantial variations in the content of party government in different countries.