Judicial independence across democratic regimes: understanding the varying impact of political competition
Aydın, Aylin (2013) Judicial independence across democratic regimes: understanding the varying impact of political competition. Law and Society Review, 47 (1). pp. 105-134. ISSN 0023-9216 (Print) 1540-5893 (Online)
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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/lasr.12003
One of the most prominent explanations of the creation and maintenance of independent judiciary is the insurance theory that proposes a positive relationship between political competition and judicial independence. But, does intense political competition inevitably lead to higher levels of judicial independence across all types of democracies? Conducting a large-N cross-country analysis over 97 democratic countries, this study shows that as democratic quality across countries changes, the impact of political competition on judicial independence changes as well. The empirical findings reveal that while in advanced democracies high levels of political competition enhances judicial independence, in developing democracies political competition significantly hampers the independence of the courts.
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