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Recasting Bourgeois EuropeStabilization in France, Germany, and Italy in the Decade after World War I$
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Charles S. Maier

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169798

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169798.001.0001

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Majorities without Mandates: Issues and Elections in the Spring of 1924

Majorities without Mandates: Issues and Elections in the Spring of 1924

Chapter:
(p.421) 7 Majorities without Mandates: Issues and Elections in the Spring of 1924
Source:
Recasting Bourgeois Europe
Author(s):

Charles S. Maier

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691169798.003.0008

This chapter examines issues arising from the elections that were held in France, Germany, and Italy in the spring of 1924, asking in particular whether the elections could resolve the political ambiguities persisting in the three countries. It suggests that the presence of important political alternatives could not guarantee that the voting would yield clear decisions. Even where significant majorities or shifts of opinion occurred, the results were not unequivocal in terms of the issues at stake. Choices on the ballot did not parallel real policy alternatives. Superficially decisive victories led merely to coalitions built around opportunity rather than policy. The chapter considers the limits of Benito Mussolini's majority, the setback suffered by the Social Democratic Party (SPD) at the polls, and the coalition between the Radical Socialist Party and the SPD to form the Cartel des Gauches.

Keywords:   elections, France, Germany, Italy, coalitions, Benito Mussolini, Social Democratic Party, Radical Socialist Party, Cartel des Gauches, majorities

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