We consider the question of whether Russia's greatly weakened political parties might continue to exert an influence on public opinion in twenty-first century Russia. To do so, we carried out a series of survey-based experiments in Moscow in the spring of 2006. We present evidence showing that partisan cues increase support for public policy proposals and make it more likely that respondents will adopt a position on an issue that mirrors their party's preferred position ("opinion taking"), as well as increase the likelihood that respondents will adopt a position on a given issue at all ("opinion giving"). We also present evidence that party cues can sway the opinions of nonpartisans, though such influence may be limited to cases when the position of a party constitutes an unusually informative or credible signal. The findings should be of interest to those concerned with Russia's post-communist political development, those interested more broadly in the effects of partisan cues on political behavior, as well as to scholars trying to characterize the nature of "competitive authoritarian" regimes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations