Using both aggregate and survey data, this paper presents a reinterpretation of the social bases of party support in Ireland. A large volume of aggregate data is collapsed into a number of indices using principal components analyses. Regressions of these indices on party voting at county level show a stronger patterning of Fianna Fail voting than had previously been found, while the Fine Gael vote remains as resistant as ever to aggregate analysis. A large number of public opinion surveys is smoothed into a set of time series; these show, in contrast, that Fine Gael support does have significant patterning at the level of the individual voter. Both types of data thus need to be deployed in order to produce an interpretation of the social bases of support for the Irish parties.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations