Dynamic Political Rhetoric: Electoral, Economic, and Partisan Determinants of Speech-Making in the UK Parliament

Kira Killermann, Sven-Oliver Proksch

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    Abstract

    Parliamentary debate is one major outlet for Members of Parliament (MPs), who spend lots of time preparing for and participating in such discussions. In this paper, we investigate in how far the focus MPs choose in their speeches varies as the economic, partisan and electoral context changes. We choose to study the dynamics nature of speech content in the UK House of Commons, as British MPs enjoy broad discretion regarding the content of their speeches. This paper analyses the constituency, national or partisan focus of all speeches held in the House of Commons between January 1996 and September 2004. We find that government and opposition MPs react differently to contextual changes. Government MPs generally have a higher district focus, which is increased further when the local economy declines and when the governing party becomes more popular.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 20 Jun 2013
    Event3rd Annual General Conference of the European Political Science Association 2013 - Parlament de Catalunya and Institut Verdaguer, Barcelona, Spain
    Duration: 20 Jun 201322 Jun 2013
    Conference number: 3

    Conference

    Conference3rd Annual General Conference of the European Political Science Association 2013
    CountrySpain
    CityBarcelona
    Period20/06/1322/06/13

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    Keywords

    • IR-88917
    • METIS-301617

    Cite this

    Killermann, K., & Proksch, S-O. (2013). Dynamic Political Rhetoric: Electoral, Economic, and Partisan Determinants of Speech-Making in the UK Parliament. Paper presented at 3rd Annual General Conference of the European Political Science Association 2013, Barcelona, Spain.