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Political Research Exchange - PRX

Following the Stream? The Rise of Public Euroscepticsm in the Czech Republic

European Union
Party Systems
Public Opinion
Petr Voda
Masaryk University
Petr Voda
Masaryk University

During the last decade, economic and migration crises have struck Europe. These events have been utilized by many actors in national political arenas for their particular goals. The aim of this paper is to capture the dynamic of both specific and diffuse support for the EU in the Czech Republic. This country is one of the best examples to illustrate the power of elite cueing, i.e. the role of political actors in the shaping of attitudes of citizens. Despite the fact that the impact of the global economc crisis was relatively weak in the country and the Czech Republic was not affected by the migration at all,, the salience of both euroscepticism and anti-immigration attitudes has been on the rise.. Based on annual data from the “Our society” survey carried out by the agency CVVM, we analyze how the support for the EU is affected by preferences for different parties with different stances towards the EU since 2007 (year before start of economic crisis). The main hypothesis is that citizens with preference of more eurosceptic parties turn out to be more eurosceptic. The opinion of political parties towards the EU is analyzed by using automatic text analysis of party manifesto and party statements. In the analysis, the “standard” set of explanatory variables (economic evaluations, socio-demographic characteristics, political orientation) is controlled for.
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