Autocracy and democracy in post-Soviet Russia and Ukraine

Kim Andersen January 8, 2012

1 Introduction 2 Theoretical introduction 2.1 2.2 2.3 Democracy and autocracy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Consolidation of democracy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Checks and balances . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 9 12 13 13 14 14 15 15 16 16 17 23 23 25

3 Introducing the explanans 3.1 3.2 3.3 Natural resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Party system and party of power . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Constitution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

4 Methodological approach 4.1 4.2 Most similar systems design and process tracing . . . . . . . . . . Operationalisation and causal links . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.2.1 4.2.2 4.2.3 4.2.4 4.3 Natural resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Party system . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Party of power (PoP) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Author of the constitution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Theoretical model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

5 Comparison of Russia and Ukraine 6 Case study 6.1 6.2 Russia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ukraine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


7 Considering an alternative explanation 8 Discussion and conclusion 8.1 8.2 Diffusion versus the rest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

27 28 29 30 32 33 34 35 36

A Appendix I: Duma elections in 1993 and 1995 B Appendix II: Duma elections in 1999 and 2003 C Appendix III: Duma elections in 2007 D Appendix IV: Rada elections in 1994 and 1998 E Appendix V: Rada elections in 2002 and 2007




Both Russia and Ukraine became independent of the Soviet Union in 1991, and as “young” countries, their democratic history have been turbulent. Executive and legaslative arm-wrestling over power-sharing has been the norm rather than the exception. Despite these scuffles, Ukraine managed to embark on a consolidation course, whereas Russia slided into autocracy as depicted in figure 1. Thus, the research question sounds, Why did Russia slide into autocracy, whereas Ukraine remained somewhat stable in the same period. Figure 1: Democratic development in Russia and Ukraine according to Freedom House

Notes: Scores are an addition of political rights and civil liberties, and as such, most only be seen as a rough estimate. Source: Freedom-House (2011)

The understanding of the research question entails three pivotal components of democracy. First of all, a clear definition of democracy is needed. Secondly, yet equally important, the utilisation of Linz and Stepan as well as Schedler’s theoretical conceptualisation of consolidation is needed. Thirdly, to consolidate 3

democracy, a functional political system is needed, and this depends on the checks and balances especially between the presidency and parliament. Hence, this paper deals with the question of democratic consolidation and encroachment through a battery of structural and actor explanans derived from these theoretical understandings. Thus, it is the structure-actor dichotomy that acts as the central structure of the paper. The demise and collapse of democracy has often been related to a presence of natural resources such as oil and minerals (Ross, 2001: 356f). Yet these modernisation theorists, who forward these theoretical understandings, have only developed a conceptual understanding of the effects of natural resources on the state apparatus and its relationship with its population. They have not delved upon how natural resources enters the system. Often it has been assumed that states autocratise and then use the resources to bolster the regime. This paper attempts to develop an understanding of how natural resources enter the political system. The argument is developed in section 3.1. For now it must suffice to say that the interplay between natural resources, party system, constitution, and party of power determine the effectiveness of the checks and balances. This is answered by utilising a “Most Similar Systems Design” bolstered by “Process tracing”. Finally, the scope conditions of this paper needs to be stated. First of all, the focus is new democracies. Functioning democracies such as Norway, have access to natural resources, yet because of the consolidated nature of these democracies, they do not get impeded. Thus, the countries of interest are those that can be considered newly constituted democracies embarking on a consolidation course. Finally, these countries must have realised their natural resources and privatised these former state assets. Hence, this paper is limited to post-communist countries and in particular the former Soviet Union. The next section deals with the theoretical introduction, whereas the third section elaborates on the explanans. The fourth and the fifth section depict the theoretical model and the methodological approach, whereas section six and seven compares and elaborates on the comparison through process tracing. The eighth section delves briefly upon the question of diffusion as an alternative explanation. The last section discuss and concludes.


Theoretical introduction

This section sets out to develop an understanding of democracy and autocracy. Hereafter it continues with the question of consolidation and finally addresses


It is important to stress the competitive element of elections. Linz and Stepan (1996: 38f) define autocracy as a political system with limited pluralism. The second definition is that of autocracy. This type of autocracy is defined as civilian (ibid. he leaves the electorate with the task of electing the deliberating leadership (Moller and Skaaning. who argue that minimalist democracy includes competitive elections (Moller and Skaaning. and hence the system is arbitrary1 .). 5 . and thus mobilisation is not prevalent. who subscribes to a minimalist definition. 2.3). which is exercising power within illdefined formal limits but with predictable norms. the number of cases is reduced to western democracies. The understanding of the leadership is further developed by Cheibub et al. The leadership-type that is relevant in this paper is the one where there are no hereditary succession nor usage of titles as well as no military involvment. There is no guiding ideology. The government is leaded by a small group. democracy is an arena where deliberation takes place. 2010: 271). yet have significant democratic as well as autocratic traits. One defining democracy as involving competitive elections and a balanced polity. According to Schumpeter. It is also important to note that there are no checks and balances. because an imbalanced polity would be able to make encroachments on the meaningfulness of competitive elections (cf. This position is echoed by Moller and Skaaning. Such elections stress the importance of a balanced polity. who define three types of autocracy by stressing three types of leadership. section 2.checks and balances as are needed for the functioning of democracy. this paper involves two distinct definitions. The first definition that needs to be elucidated is that of democracy understood as minimalist democracy. (2010: 87). The right definition of democracy depends on the cases. and the other involving autocracy defined as a polity without elections and a guiding ideology. This paper deals with cases that are far from being liberal democracies. to capture these countries. To sum up. two definitions suitable of these cases are needed. yet he denounces this as a possibility. Hence. Thus. Thus. The Ogden-Richards triangle shows the relationship between the intension of the definition and the number of cases or extensions.1 Democracy and autocracy Democracy is a contested concept. Definitions are as numerous as there are regimes claiming the name of democracy. using a definition with many intensions such as liberal democracy. The polity is biased in favour of the leadership. forthcomming). 1 This proposition is supported by the lack of rule of law.

Schedler (1998: 93) argues that there are principally two dangers. The gradual democratic erosion is a problem. Thus. The regime has not been able to create the mass legitimacy. seen as essential to even minimalist democracies in order to maintain meaningful democratic elections. It is followed by one about checks and balances. The first is the democratic breakdown. Put bluntly. Schedler argues that if a regime is facing a breakdown.” Because the focus of this paper is the attempt to consolidate democracy.. 1998: 97). the necessary behavioural changes among the (potential) ruling elites have not been thorough enough. who have to accept democracy institutionally and procedurally as the most appropriate way to govern the state. 1998: 94ff). Such gradual weakening is exemplified by attacks on institutions of democracy such as elections or attempts to subvert the rule of law. The attitudinal dimension focuses primarily on the ordinary people. and institutions (ibid.. That is. uncertainty.. the constitutional dimension requires that actors within the state solve issues through laws. the attempts to weaken democracy.” (Schedler. many new democratic regimes faces. young consolidating democracies faces. erosion requires ”[. which is needed for it to avoid breakdown. as Linz and Stepan (1996: 5) write. Finally. is a regime that has not been able to eliminate disloyal players.] the intermittent or gradual weakening of democracy by those elected to lead it.2 Consolidation of democracy Linz and Stepan (1996: 6) argue that consolidation of democracy requires behavioural. 1998: 6 . Schedler (1998: 96) argues that a regime facing such threats.). political etc. which develops an understanding of the direction of regime.] political situation in which [. it is important to dwell on the negative side of the consolidation process... 2. whereas the second is the democratic erosion. can spend resources on developing alternatives to the democratic regime or attempt to secede. and constitutional changes. is absent (Schedler. Democratic breakdown necessitates instability.The next section deals with consolidation. however. whether social. a consolidated democracy is the ”[. Their behavioural dimension entails that no actor. and thus failed to shape pro-democratic attitudes in the population. Using Linz and Stepan’s arguments. procedures.] democracy has become ’the only game in town’. vulnerability. The confidence in the regime.. and reversibility. It might also be the creation of hegemonic parties in order to strangle electoral competition as well as the abuse of state resources by the incumbents in order to maintain power (Schedler. attitudinal. it is not only the elimination of disloyal players that lacks.

democratic consolidation is changes in elite behaviour. as depicted in section 2. which has an elaborate seperation of powers between the Congress and the presidency among other. Each branch has certain rights that can keep other branches in check. In illiberal systems. Mainwaring and Shugart (1997: 469) are not as pessimistic as Linz. To sum up. the concept of gradual weakening. Diamond and Morlino argue that horizontal accountability is related to the ability of one institution to keep a check on another institution.). the concept of checks and balances must be probed. This is what Linz defines as the problem of dual legitimacy. 2007: 277).97ff). might make the president more prone to get head-to-head with the parliament rather than settling the disputes (Linz. 2008: 721).3 Checks and balances Until now. democratic erosion is very much a question of behaviour. popular attitudes. on the other hand. but to fully grasp their relationship. If the presidency is only subject to the people. The president. because of the possibility of solving these issues through a careful institutional design. and at best vertical. the state of the checks and balances is important if democracy 7 . accountability rarely works horizontal. is able to veto Congress legislation (ibid. 1990: 52f). and the acceptance of the law as the ultimate arbiter of solutions to problems. Following Schedler’s ”gradual weakening”-logic as depicted above.2. as they too have popular backing. 2. it is in a favourable position to weaken other institutions such as the parliament. 1990: 60). this paper has considered democracy and consolidation. The perhaps most prominent example is the American system. These concerns follow Linz’ critique of the presidency. implying that the president is not accountable to any institutions and only to the people (Hague and Harrop. the two chambers of Congress can impeach. Thus. and remove a president as an example. The popular mandate given to the president through the direct election. However. must be scrutinised. convict. Whereas the erosion of rule of law is an attack on the constitutional solution of problems as indicated by Linz and Stepan. the parliament are not necessary ready to give in. They are also able to deny the president legislation as well as taxes (Kousser and Ranney. the question of Diamond and Morlino’s (2005: xxi) horizontal accountability. Breakdown and erosion entail a negative development of Linz and Stepan’s three dimensions. Solutions to democracyrelated issues depends on the personality and style of the president (Linz. Schedler brought forth. To sum up.

and thus. Kitschelt’s understanding of structure and actor based explanans needs elucidation. As Mainwaring and Shugart correctly points out. and its effect on checks and balances. party system. and constitution as structural explanations. This lends credence to two hypotheses: H1: Imbalanced polities turn autocratic because the presidency is capable of encroaching parliamentarian power. Table 1: Overview of explanans Name Natural resources Party system Constitution Party of power Structure X X X X Actor Before delving on the explanans.has to have a chance to consolidate. deep or structural explanations trump its proximate or actor-based counterparts. the main structure of this paper is the structure-actor2 dichotomy. whereas a party of power as an actor explanation. as is evidenced in section 3. yet he stresses that their role is to complement the deep explanan. shallow and actor-based are used for the same type of explanan. the constitution must be seen as a shallow explanan dominated by actors because of Preuss’ arguments regarding the role of constitutions in newly established regimes. Such complementary explanans diverge from situations where the deep course brings about the proximate explanan 2 Throughout the paper deep and structural are used intertwined for the same type of explanan like proximate. However. presidential biased polities have greater maneuverability when it comes to encroaching the parliamentarian powers.3. and thus have more maneuverability in manipulating the democratic institutions. 8 . The explanan overview is depicted in table 1. He does not deny the usefulness of the actor explanan. It is tempting to define natural resources. 3 Introducing the explanans As briefly mentioned in the Introduction. HA: A balanced polity can consolidate. the institutional design needs to balance the presidency and the parliament as well as create the necessary mechanisms that can provide solutions. Hence. According to Kitschelt (2003: 74). the solution lies in the institutional design.

but where the outcome is not connected to the proximate explanan. The repression effect is the creation of a large state apparatus to repress demands for democracy often violently (Ross. The latter scenario is not relevant in this paper.2 Party system and party of power This section is built around the party system and the party of power. Hence. 3. Thus. to dampen demands for democracy by reducing group activities or making pro-state groups that dominate the polity. The party system is a structural explanan because it rests 9 . However. Thus. Two qualifications are needed in order to fully grasp how natural resources enter. thus leaving the political system biased and unbalanced and not in a position to consolidate qua the behaviour of the elite. natural resources have two points of entry. in both cases. the beneficiary or the incumbent gains an unfair advantage over other parties. whereas Ross finds support for two different effects that emanates from natural resources (the rentier and represion effect). when the beneficiary can and does use the natural resources to his own gain. assuming that the natural resources are owned by private people. That is. depending on the ownership. The negative effect sets in. the question of how the incumbent gets access to these resources. before Ross’ two effects set in. Whereas taxes involve the population (Moller and Skaaning. 3. as the deep explananw work through other explanans as depicted in figure 2 on page 17. and these entry points are dependent on other explanans and most importantly. Secondly. This is what Ross (2001: 335) defines as the rentier effect. Firstly. as well as one relating the two. 2001: 336). he does not delve upon how the natural resources enter the polity in newly established and fledging democracies. natural resources alienate the population from the political process.and the outcome.1 Natural resources Ross (2001: 356f) argues that the role of natural resources vis-` a-vis democracy is that of the impeder. in this paper it is dependent on the measurement of party system and party of power. must be elucidated. the existence of a party of power. While natural resources have been considered a very deep and structural explanan. to nationalise the natural resources the beneficiary needs control over the parliament in order to justify the action. forthcomming). to sum up. the beneficiary needs to gain access to the owner or (re)take the ownership.

old. The second argument is related to that of a party of power. personalistic in the sense that they are built around a small number of actors and thus void of any ideology. According to Aardal (1994: 220). and not very fragmented parties fluctuating around such cleavages as class or ethnicity. 2002: 181) and hence the parliament. whereas the structural are related to the different parties and their relationship. the question of the strength of the stability or the level of volatility is of greatest importance. According to Madrid (2005: 2). and fragmented parties are more volatile than their old. This echoes the traits 3 Aardal delves into the demands of what constitutes a real cleavage. and its periphery.] net change within the electoral party system resulting from individual vote transfers. can be found in Lipset and Rokkan’s analysis of the party system dominating western Europe. These cleavages structure the outlook of parties (Whitefield. 2005: 3).on the cleavages created in society. not only dependent on the type of parties. the most volatile parties are those dependent on economic cleavages. who define volatility as the ”[. but also on the absolute number. it is assumed that those cleavages structuring the Russian and Ukrainian party system fulfill these demands. or the classic worker-capitalist conflict3 . it is expected that the voter moves when the economy moves. The subtantial factors are related to the type of cleavage. Hence. Thus. volatility is dominated by substantial and structural factors. however. Thus. They find that parties dependent on ethnolinguistic. and territorial..”.). young. to change one’s ethnolinguistic position is impossible. The essential question is to investigate what leads to these movements of votes. In this paper. according to Almond et al. cleavages originate in different conflicts such as the dichotomy between the centre of a country.. The stability of cleavags are thus essential to the stability of the party system. religious. the urban-rural conflict. If choice of party is dependent on economy rather than ethnolinguistics. To sumarise. Whereas it is easier to change one’s economic position. a very stable party system is one dominated by few. fragmentation as well as their age. Fluctuations in the economy are likely to be translated into changes in voter preferences. as well as class-based cleavages are less subject to volatility (Madrid. (2008: 82). 10 . which is. Examples of more stable cleavages. The volatility of parties are. few and less fragmented counterparts (ibid. many. The explanation why this is so might be straight forward and follows the concept of deep and proximate explanans. Pedersen (1979: 3) quotes Ascher and Tarrow. Madrid also argues that polarised party systems are less volatile.

it is important to relate such parties to that of the party system.] is significantly stronger than all the others.. to sum up. Depending on the internal dynamics of the party. Before embarking on an elucidation of the structure of such parties and their damaging effect. However.3. They argue that such parties are typical in new democracies such as Russia (cf. They are not inclined to change party. However. party discipline and cohesion are very high among members of the British House of Commons.1. 11 . because of the alignments of the electorate. 2007: 245). 2008: 171). where there are deep rooted cleavages. Thus.. Hence. with strong discipline and is cohesive. the president cannot expect the party to shoulder all policies.“ (Hague and Harrop. Catch-all parties fares poorly in heavily structured party systems. it is possible to say that a party of power with damaging capabilities is one that fluctuates around leading actors. and especially in order for it to act as a check on the presidency. This is because both parties in the United States are not very cohesive and at times have a weak discipline (Kousser and Ranney. Sartori argues that a ”[. section 6. Depending on whether the party of power are cohesive and disciplined as in the British case or the opposite as in the American case.] party that outdistances all others [. Hence.. Yet. Hence. According to Strom (1990: 566) it is a party that seeks to maximise electoral support. voting follows party-lines (Rose. in 90 percent of all cases. Rose writes that parliaments are able to hold the government accountable for abuses of power. in the British House of Commons. The United Kingdom might prove to be a very different case. The American political system is an example of a system with a presidential party that acts as a check on even its own president.. it might pose a serious challenge for the functioning of the parliament. it is not enough that it is built around an actor and is cohesive. 2008: 738f). the damaging effect on the parliament as a check and balancing institution can be either small or large. to become damaging. it must also be dominating. it is only possible if the party system is volatile and thus susceptible to catch-all parties. and finally dominates to such an extent that it is possible for the party to prevent the parliament from acting as a balancing institution. and thus maximise control with the government. a parliament is often in opposition to the presidency. As is depicted in section 2. a successful version of this type of party is not expected in countries.of the vote-seeking party often known as a catch-all party.

2.” (Preuss. 1992-93: 642). 1992-93: 653). As an example. occasions..” (my emphasis).” (my emphasis) (Preuss. Easter (1997: 187) argues that depending on the structure of the former elites.. and moral. thus making it the highest source of authority in any society only subject to the constitution itself. accountability. 1992-93: 640). and a limitation on the prerogatives of the state (O’Donnell. It is deep in the sense that it defines the political framework of any country. It ensures political rights. it is actors that define the constitution. 12 . Hence.). Feher argues that ”[. civil. and as mentioned above. is to place the elected representation over all other branches of government (Preuss. One prominent constraint mentioned by Preuss is that of the former regime. tempers. which disclose themselves only in a long space of time. Preuss’ (1992-93: 641) argues that the constitution ”[. One pivotal goal of such a constitutionally defined setup. different types of regimes occur. He argues that it is the essential pillar upon which any high-quality democracy rests. It is proximate precisely because it is the written foundation of a country. who stresses that ”No type of delegated power can in any way alter the conditions of its delegation. This is based on his emphasis of what rule of law ensures. which in one way or the other inspires the founding fathers of the new polity (ibid. is that of constitutional rule of law. 1992-93: 639).. O’Donnell’s emphasis on the importance of the rule of law for liberal democracies echo these positions.3 Constitution A constitution is a very unique explanan in the sense that it fuses the deep and proximate or actor-based explanans. while it is plausible to argue that there are structural factors that shape these moods and habitudes. which entails authors and interests. and social habitudes of the people. Thus. The proximate component of the constitutional explanan is vested in Burke’s argument that constitutions are ”[. Constitutional superiority is echoed by Sieyes.3. the constitution defines the country’s political set up.] creates the political and institutional preconditions for the emergence of totally new social and political actors. civil liberties. it assumed that the type of rule of law he deals with. this section must elucidate both the structural components of the constitution as well as the actor-based components.. If the constitution 4 Although O’Donnell does not say it explicitly. newly created countries can to a certain extent shape their constitution as they see fit.. Hence. dispostions. Two issues are worth mentioning in relation with section 2. 2004: 32)4 .] a constitution based on will can only endure as long as those persons whose wills backed the document..] made by the peculiar circumstances.” (Preuss.

1 Methodological approach Most similar systems design and process tracing The methodological approach is deterministic. SSDs demand that all relevant explanans are specified. It is in such a situation. it needs to deliver a constitution that can be broadly accepted especially by all institutional actors. As opposed to probabilistic methodology that deems relationships probable. and that the far majority of these are held constant. cannot garner mass support. a process tracing method as described by Bennett (2005: 206) is utilised. in order to consolidate. yet varies on key explanans as well as the outcome. any constitution favouring the presidency might damage the democratic development. Is it the parliament or is it the presidency. which in this paper is assumed to be the presidency and the parliament. Landman (2006: 29) argues that MSSD seeks to compare cases that are alike on most explanans. 2006: 30). As mentioned above. and thus the question of outliers become important. and thus might not survive its creator. Thus. it might not last. the constitution entails a definition of the checks and balances as well as battles between those with interests in the setup. This lends crendence to the importance of the author that wrote the constitution. will they attempt to overthrow the document. Hence. conflict arises.2). Any constitutional document built on will. To maximise the difference in the outcome. Hence. it is very difficult to know whether the neighbouring case fits the same relationship. As is evidenced below. Tsebelis (2002: 27) argues that the unanimity core is dependent on the preferences of the actors in question. 4 4. section 2. If neither can agree on it. this is not the case of this study. a constitutional battle might either weaken or even force a democracy to break down (cf. To address this caveat. Or put inversely. This addressed through the scope conditions depicted in section 1. or what is known as a most similar systems design (MSSD) followed by process tracing that probes the findings of the MSSD. democracy needs a constitution accepted by the key institutions of the regime. To sum up. Assuming that the presidency submits a draft that lies outside the indifference lines of the parliament.does not receive the support described by Linz and Stepan. deterministic assumes that explanan X leads to outcome Y. It is an attempt to identify intervening causal processes. in order for a democratic regime to maximise legitimacy. the methodological approach is deterministic. 13 . the case is selected on the explanandum (Landman.

The one used in this paper is an analytical explanation. it is along the lines of the theory explained in section 2 and the operationalisation depicted in section 4. the two first are understood as structures. The presence of natural resources can be used to control society through the rentier and repression effect as described in section 3. 2. Natural resources give the incumbent a resource-advantage. Regarding the series of constants depicted in table 2 on page 22 this paper subscribes to Møller and Skaaning’s (2009: 307) understanding of the economic level. To fully understand these arguments.This makes it an ideal companion for MSSDs especially like the one of this paper.3 and the 14 . As depicted in table 1.1. whereas the latter two are understood as actor-based explanans. Bennett identifies several different forms of process traincing. if the incumbent has a party of power strong enough to nationalise privatised state corporations.1 Natural resources Natural resources are a binary and structural explanan.2. legacy. Thus. each explanan is operationsalised.2 the process tracing takes place. Alternatively. 4. 4. table 2). The causal chain argues that natural resources are either granted the incumbent through private sponsors or through parties of power with a negative effect on the checks and balances. The idea that natural resources are granted the incumbent through private sponsors is based on the assumption that former state corporations have been privatised. It is either present or absent. and the causal links are spelled out. The original purpose of an MSSD is to single out the key explanan and determine the deterministic relationship. The model is defined in section 4. Therefore further elaboration on these explanans are not conducted. two qualifications are needed. and transition (cf. the process tracing must attempt not only to single out the most important explanan.2 Operationalisation and causal links In the sections below. but because this paper does not have a single explanan. which is basically a detailed narrative couched in theoretical terms. follows Ross’ (2001: 356f) findings regarding the negative effect on democracy from both oil and minerals. it can be argued that natural resources bolster the negative effects of disloyal elites (cf. it must also define the causal relationship. the natural resources are at his disposal without the need of private consent.3 depicted in figure 2. The understanding of what constitutes a natural resource as well as the effect of such. Hence.

The causal chain indicates that on the one hand. they are not dependent on a specific cleavage (cf. make a party system volatile and thus not very structured. the question of voting behaviour needs to be addressed.. yet equally important. to measure the presence of strong cleavages or alternatively. Hence. This method follow Ascher and Tarrow’s definition albeit in a simplified manner. the party must as a minimum be the most significant party in the parliament.2).2. Thus. and as such. the party of power needs to have clear connections to the presidency. To estimate volatility.2. Autocracies might try to prevent certain groups in participating in any form of electoral process. which lends credence to their definition as actor-based explanans. Albeit the method is crude compared to the approach defined by Pedersen. The causal chain related to the party of power indicates that the presence of such parties have a negative effect on checks and balances and hence the 15 . cleavages have a negative effect on parties of power as a result of their catch-all nature as well as a postive effect on checks and balances. To identify cleavages. section 3.1 and the importance of meaningful elections.3 Party of power (PoP) A party of power is unique in the sense that they are personalistic and built around a small number of actors. Strong cleavages make it more difficult for the author to neglect large parts of the population. This is built on the assumption that all are able and allowed to create representation. and entails an actor decision.2). voter choices are cross referenced with the party’s supporter base and fluctuations in support over time.2 Party system The party system is based on the concept of cleavages (cf. it is considered a structural explanan. it still gives a rough idea about whether a system is volatile. This is built on the assumption that parties of power without any significant influence. This is so because the parliament is strongly organised. This follows the lines of section 2. The same positive effect can be found in relation with the writing of the constitution. Instead of looking at percentage of votes each party gains. a high degree of volatility. the number of seats are evaluated. to measure a party of power. and thus it might be dangerous to neglect certain groups. 4. section 3. The cleavage is the structuring part of a party system.behavioural dimension) or parties of power rather than being a negative effect in itself. 4. and void cleavages. Secondly. cannot tilt the checks and balances. party support from election to election is measured. Thus.

The question of the party system enters independent of natural resouces. Hence.4 Author of the constitution Feher’s argument regarding the survival of will-based constitutions is pitvotal for the operationalisation of this explanan (cf. Will-based constitutions are assumed to lie outside Tsebelis unanimity core. One such feature might be the balancing between the parliament and the presidency. Thus. In both scenarios. the central aim of this explanan is to measure the conflict surrounding the constitution. section 3. 4. 2. This measurement is based on the assumption that a constitution defined by the presidency is pro-presidential and thus imbalancing.3).3 Theoretical model As indicated in section 4. there is an extra-constitutional parliamentarian framework.3)5 .parliament because of its ability to prevent the parliament from functioning. the party of power slant the checks and balances in favour of the president. assuming that a parliament is already settled. It affects the strength of the party of power as well as the checks and balances. As depicted in figure 2 on page 17 the negative effect of natural resources enters the polity either through private sponsors or parties of power. It is in scenarios of this kind that the party of power has a negative effect on the parliament and thus the checks and balance.2 each explanan plays a signficant role through various chains in affecting the checks and balances. However.2. the parliament and the presidency are both affected and affect the constitution. Strong parties of power are also in a better position to re-write the constitution and thus tamper with the institutions of democracy as well as claim power over state assets. The strength of the party of power is dependent on the degree of volatility and its ability to gain the majority of the votes. and thus making the constitution a question of will. 5 This argument is built around Mainwaring and Shugart’s understanding that carefully designed systems can attenuate problems with presidentialism. 4. Thus. the essential question to ask is. 16 . which affects the development of the constitution through its cleavages. The causal chain indicates that the strength of the cleavages (or volatility) and party of power work through the framework of the constitution. It is a problem if issues with the presidency must be attenuated (cf. whether the author (thus actor-based explanan) has taken other than narrow interests into consideration.

.. yet for now it must suffice to say that it strengthen it.Despite the traditional understanding of constitutions as a relatively deep and structural variable. referred to as a ”[. During most of Yeltsin’s time as president. the negative effects of 17 . that mined for natural resources. 2007: 8). This created a very strong group of oligarchs. Figure 2: Theoretical model 5 Comparison of Russia and Ukraine Russia has an abundance of natural resources. they supported him ardently. Putin changed the privatisation trend. they helped removed the popular prime minister (Duncan. and during his brief struggle with then-prime minister Jevgenij Primakov. section 7).“ (Duncan. 2008: 394). but during the transition-phase. 2007: 2). it is highly dependent on the power arrangement. and started a re-nationalisation of key industries.] group of seven or so bankers who applied their vast wealth and influence to ensure the re-election of Boris El’tsin as President in 1996. One effect of this is elaborated in connection with parties of power. en masse (Remington. in new countries. Russia privatised state-owned enterprises. Ambrosio (2009: 51) notes that the Russian elite created a series of state controlled NGOs to insulate Russia from external interference (cf. This make it subject to the cleavage / volatility situation as well as parties of power. Yet because it is the ultimate definer of checks and balances. Thus. it is important to understand who has authored the document and the author’s position.

6 The 7 This Communist Party of the Russian Federation is supported by the development in the GDP. Naftohaz is constantly on the bringe of bankruptcy and is indepted to the Russian energy-giant Gazprom (ibid. 2008: 396). These trends echo Madrid’s depiction of economic cleavages as susceptible to volatility. Thus. are also subject to volatility. This voter allignment is echoed in the 2003 election. In 1999 the CPRF6 gained most votes among the poorest. is to observe the total number of parties. Of the 1999 parties. despite the possibility of rents. whereas the new party. In 1993 12 parties contested. They are decimated to 52 seats in 2003. 2007). In 1993 Russia’s Choice wins 70 seats. The growth in the supporters of United Russia is assumed to be explained by the growth in GDP7 (Rose. section 3. gained most votes among the richer (Remington. appendix C). it is possible to argue that despite the presence of an indeed strong economic cleavage. Because of the transition many people slided into powerty. whereas Unity or Yeltsin’s party had greatest success among the wealthier (Rose. where Unity’s successor. and as noted in section 7. Naftohaz. which is negative until 1998. United Russia. only seven of those parties contested in the 1995 election (cf. The majority of the people are ethnic Ukrainian.). From 1999 it grows with an average of two to three percent (Remington. Another way to observe volatility in this period. Russia holds a Duma election in 1993 and again in 1995. Of those 12 parties. that benefitted from the economic downturn. The difference between rich and poor as measured by the Gini-index doubled (Remington. United Russia. From the 1995 election.2). only four parties contested during the 1999 election. but because of economic mismanagement. it is dependent on Russia. battered its way unto the political stage with 222 seats. appendix A). the Ukraine gas transit system transport around 120 billion cubic metres or 80 percent of Russia’s gas to Europe (Gnedina and Emerson. The economic cleavage can be seen as a direct consequence of the privatisation or chock-theory in Russia. However. The system is administrated by a state energy company. The 2007 election follows this trend (cf. Natural resources is not playing as important a role in Ukraine as in Russia. mismanagement has prevented the Ukrainian state access to ”easy” money. 2007). appendix B). only four parties contested in 2003 (cf.natural resources are found in connection with elections and the rentier effect. CPRF wins 103 seats in the same period. Thus. volatility is high (cf. In 1995 it is reduced to meagre nine seats. 2008: 391). 2008: 395f). 2009: 2). The CPRF. 18 . and unemployment rates soared. Ukraine is very different from Russia in the sense that Ukraine is dominated by two large ethnic groups.

19 . Of the other parties three survive from 1994 to 1998. the run up to the approval was not void of trouble. However. 2005: 4). 2006: 108f). it is worth noting that the Russians’ did not switch to a nonethnic based party during the strengthening of the Ukrainian GDP in the 2000s (Duenwald. The Communist participated in the 1994. the Communist party is the most stable with the longest election record. there seems to be a degree of volatility in the Ukrainian party system. Despite this very strong cleavage. 2006: 111). Thus.whereas the largest minority is ethnic Russian. Gueorguiev and Schaechter. 1998. This is also echoed in the 2002 parliamentarian election as well as the presidential elections (D’Anieri. where Russians in general backed the Communists. This draft gave the president lawmaking prerogatives. and thus leaving the question with the people. and 2007 parliamentarian elections. only two countinues. The same goes for 2007 (cf. 2001: 160f). 2001: 169). but at the same time gave the Duma and the Upper Chamber the possibility of override vetoes by a two-thirds vote in each chamber (Remington. it is plausible to argue that Yeltsin alienated other parts of the political arena as well as used will to get his draft approved (cf. Two distinct positions emerged. The post-Soviet Yeltsin authored constitution was approved by referendum in 1993.8 percent voted in favour of his draft (Remington. section 6. despite the strong cleavage. volatility is observed. whereas they lost seats in both the 2002 and 2007 election. Yeltsin’s supporters. Anti-Yeltsin forces sought to create a two-tiered form of government. As is evidenced in appendix E the Russians continued to vote for pro-Russian parties. To disconfirm the claim that Russians’ favour the left-wing because of economy. It is smaller than in Russia. wanted to maximise presidential power and minimise the Duma’s ability to block Yeltsin (Remington. In the first two elections they gained seats. 2002. Of all the Ukrainian parties. Yeltsin’s supporters sat up a presidential counterpart with the aim of creating a presidential constitution (Remington. While the Duma refused to approve the Yeltsin-draft. These regional patterns are echoed in the 1998 election8 . appendix D and E).1 for 8 It is likely that the 1994 election follows these lines as well. where presidential powers were limited. While anti-Yeltsin deputies took part in a constitutional assembly. Yeltsin decided to take the matter outside the existing constitutional framework. whereas from 1999 to 2002. which is evidenced in the relative smaller changes in voting behaviour among those voting for the parties that manage to run for more than one election. The latter being an essential part of the independence movement (D’Anieri. 2001: 168). and the ethnic Ukrainians backed Rukh. on the other hand. 2001: 170). Thus. 54.

which dominates the Duma with 222 seats in 2003 and 315 in 2007 (cf. This reform transferred power from the president to the prime minister (D’Anieri. 73). Thus.2. Russia’s Choice disappears practically in 1995 (cf. the Ukrainian constitution is approved by fist. This was resisted by the Rada (D’Anieri. when Kuchma attempted to amend the constitution. The first Ukrainian constitutional document was approved in 1995 called the ”law on power”. A real power of party did not manifest itself in Russia until Unity. 2006: 92). as in Russia. which was affliated with Putin. Feher’s argument regarding will-based constitutions seem to have merit in the Ukrainian case. alienating parts of the political society. and pushed the constitution through the Rada (D’Anieri. where he had more power. a real significant party of power is only United Russia. whereas a real constitution was put in effect in 1996. as specified in section 3. United Russia has clear connections to the Russian presidency in the sense 20 . elaboration of the effects). which made the Rada approve the amendments (D’Anieri. the Ukrainian Rada was never in agreement with Kuchma and put up a fierce fight. the constitution was perceived as the lesser of two evils. and as Rada speaker. the parliament would otherwise not grant him. it does not receive the same status as United Russia. The 1995 ”Law on Power” is a package suggested by then-president Kuchma. as the Rada repealled the reforms of the constitution in 2004. contrary to the Russian case. While Gill (2006: 70) mentions Yegor Gaidar’s Russia’s Choice as a semi-official party. Kuchma used the same tactics as above. Kuchma went outside the existing framework. Oleksandr Moroz argued. 2006: 95). which would give him powers. yet it did not consist of any actual text to be replaced in the constitution.2 only strong parties of power are interesting. appendix B and C). 2006: 84). Secondly. Thus. appendix A). As in Russia much of the debate revolved around whether Ukraine should take a presidential or semi-presidential path. Another constitutional battle emerged in 2000. Hence. 2006: 90). 2006: 91). He used the unpopularity of the Rada and the threat of referendum to make the Rada approve his package. Once again Kucha threatened the Rada with his fist. As depicted in section 3. Unity contests the 1999 election and wins 73 seats. in both cases. 2006: 71. and succeeded by United Russia (Gill. which is 40 less than the Communists. In relation with the constitution of 1996. the Rada was legally binded to change it (D’Anieri. There was great support for the referendum. which was approved in 2005. but the high court decided that if Kuchma proposed a referendum supported by the people that demanded change of the constitution.

D’Anieri (2006: 93f) does. is to be the next party of power. and becomes the second largest party in the Rada in 2002. the Russian party system is much more volatile than the Ukrainian. especially United Russia might in fact be a serious problem for Russian democracy. because Kutchma links himself with the party.2 argues that the problem is only severe if the party is cohesive. the Russian party leaders have become better at maintaining cohesion. though he did not declare himself a member. United Russia has dominated Russian politics since 2003. the party disappeared (cf. disappeared in the following election. albeit Ukraine’s Rada has put up significant resistence every time. ((Haspel. 2008: 82). It is unclear whether Party of Regions. Like Russia. however. appendix D and E). Kuchma attempted to rewrite the constitution to his liking. The hypotheses are answered in the sections related to the case study 6. it is fair to assume that in time. which is dominated by an ethnic cleavage. but in 2007. in Russia. that in turn affects the possibility of creating parties of power.. This is not to the same extent the case in Ukraine. and the constitution. whereas the research question is answerd in section 8. it is plausible to argue that the checks and balances in Russia are weakened because of the weak party system. Ukraine has a presidential constitution. Thus. Thus. There is little doubt that Russia and Ukraine are alike in many ways. the party of power. According to Haspel et al. 2003: 47). which endorses Janukovich. In Ukraine there is no clear equivalent to United Russia. Section 3.that United Russia is formed by Putin during his first tenure (Almond et al. 21 . volatility. Thus. While they do not evaluate the latest elections. because the next election to the Rada is set to be hold in 2012. yet also different. identify For a United Ukraine9 as a party of power. For a United Ukraine. Table 2 summarises. 1998: 434) party cohesion is higher than expected in the first elections to the Duma. As depicted above. 9 For a United Ukraine is an electoral alliance consisting of among other Janukovich’s Party of Regions (Kuzio. whereas the only Ukrainian party of power. The party wins 101 seats. Remington and Smith.

Table 2: Comparison of Russia and Ukraine Explanans Transition Stalemate Stalemate Transit tax Cleavage Both Plenty Volatile President None Natural resources Party system Constitutional autor PoP United Russia Imbalanced Balanced Balancing Constants Legacy Russian Russian Economic level Russia Above Ukraine Above 22 .

the Russian political system is biased in favour of the presidency as of 1993. 2001: 63). Khasbulatov. as it became. 2001: 65). was in 1994 dominated by Yegor Gairdar’s Russia’s Choice. However.6 Case study In section 5 table 2 argues that the Russian political system is imbalanced in favour of the presidency. the Duma approved (Babayeva and Dokuchayev. a process tracing of each case is conducted. This struggle is briefly sketched out in section 5. Hence. In 1995 the CPRF becomes the next dominating party. with a result favouring Yeltsin’s position. the president must dissolve the Duma. and to categorise the Russian and Ukrainian regimes. The dominance did not last. The crisis.The leader of the Supreme Soviet. of reasons unknown. it did not get a democratically elected parliament and new constitution before 1993. where deputies passed laws counteracting Yeltsin’s decrees (Nichols. Yeltsin resisted. decided to turn against his former ally. as the Russian parliament was called before 1993. the successor of the Supreme Soviet. This lends credence to the notion that the main cleavage of the Russian Duma is economic. yet the third time. and as argued in section 5 the CPRF gained votes as the Russian GDP dwindled. The Russian Constitution demands that any prime minister must be approved by the Duma. however. This is best evidenced in the battle between Yeltsin and the Duma regarding the nomination and approval of prime minister Kiriyenko. and thus parties depending on this cleavage. however. the deputies would have to give up their seats just one year before the election in 1999. which created a deadlock between the Supreme Soviet and the president. the pro-presidential constitution pushed through a prime minister not very popular among the deputies of the Duma. whereas the Ukrainian is relatively more balanced. The run up to the 1993 constitution evidenced the differences between Yeltsin and the Supreme Soviet. Had the Duma refused to approve Kiriyenko. The process tracing follows a historical narrative structured around figure 2. Thus. are susceptible to fluctuations in 23 . If the Duma rejects the prime minister three times. his goal was to deprive the president of any control over the presidency in an attempt to make him a cerimonial figurehead (Nichols. The newly elected Duma.1 Russia Russia gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. 6. To fully understand this claim. The Duma rejected Kiryenko twice. 1998). was a power-struggle between elites seeking to gain control over each other (Nichols. and call for elections to the Duma. Yeltsin. 2001: 73).

The 1996 election proves to be an example of how private sponsorship works albeit by proxy.2). 2004). however. with the creation of a succesful and lasting party of power. Putin. The election of 2003 gives Putin’s United Russia overwhelming support. it is only in relation with the presidential elections. section 2. 2005) To sum up.the economy. Putin had constructed an effective parliamentarian control through his party of power. Yeltsin proposed to ask the Russians whether Lenin should be buried or not. had no opposition against nationalising key industries. Putin gets a parliamentarian tool by which he can change the way Russia is governed as well as nationalise key industries and thus use the natural resources to his advantage. while Yeltsin was not able to bury Lenin because he lacked parliamentarian support. is best depicted by Yeltsin’s attempt to bury the founder of the USSR. A prime example of the difference in power over the political arena between Yeltsin and his successor. it clearly manifests itself. which he used to among other gain control of the Russian governors. the president appoints the governors (Baker. Vladimir Lenin in 1997. a presidential constitution together with a volatile party system leaving space for a party of power controlling the Duma. 2008: 389). Hence. The media or the proxy. 24 . When the economic cleavage weakend. Russian democracy never consolidated because the elite never accepted the democratic game (cf. natural resources entered the political system through private sponsorship (Duncan. However. Putin. owned by the oligarchs. 2007: 8). His attempt failed because at the time the CPRF dominated the Duma and ardently refused any such action (AP. Hence. the Duma was strongest. then-president Yeltsin did not have the same political resources at his disposal as his successor. As depicted above. denied Yeltsin’s opponents air time in their media (Remington. 1997).1 regarding the resource benefit. Despite the argument brought forth in section 4. During the first post-Soviet presidency. United Russia. whereas after 2004. This gives the CPRF a central role during the 1990s as seen in connection with the hestitated approval of Kiryenko. Putin. because of the reinforced cleavages. the space for a party of power grew together with its negative effect on the checks and balances. tilted the checks and balances in favour of the Russian presidency. Before 2004 they were elected. Another example is the finalising takeover of Gazprom in 2005 (Denisov and Grivach. and thus makes it the new dominating party of the Duma. which in turn gives the presidency even more control over the political arena. This role evaporates as the GDP increases. at the time of the greatest deprivation of the Russian people.2.

they made the necessary compromises (D’Anieri. the Ukranians elected a new Rada.They instead attempted and succeeded in manipulating the political game to their advantage thus creating a system. Contrary to the Russian case. the Orange Revolution deserves a short note. structured around ethnic cleavages (cf. whereas ethnic Ukrainians live in the western and northern part of Ukraine. it seems evident that it is confirmed. The ethnic Russians primarily live in the eastern and southern part of Ukraine. section 2. Thus. which gave them a strong basis for secession. In relation with hypothesis H1. It brought Yushenko to power when Janukovich’s election fraud was revealed. 2007: 23).2 took another ethnic group into consideration. Ethnic Ukrainian nationalists. and thus the Orange Revolution is seen more as an interlude between Kuchma and Janukovich than a defining event. 2006: 118) As evidenced in section 5 there is a battle between Kuchma and the Rada. who put a high value on avoiding secession.). 6. Yushenko was president from 2005 to 2010 with both Timoshenko and Janukovich as prime ministers. Hence. the ethnic-Russian party.2. that in turn gave the presidency to a pro-Russian president and a significant amount of seats to ethnic-Russian parties. these cleavages became pivotal in the design of the pre-constitutional Ukrainian institutions. Thus. the first Ukrainian parliamentarian election took place before the approval of their constitution.2 Ukraine Before embarking on the process tracing. 25 . Precisely because of the placement of Ukrainian ethnicities. supported Kuchma in his amendments of the constitution as well as in the dismissal of Yushenko as prime minister in the 2000s (D’Anieri. Janukovich followed Yushenko as president in 2010. Thus. 2010). the question of cleavages and volatility is elevated to a premier position as an essential determining factor of the future outlook of Ukrainian politics. because of Janukovich’s succefull attempt to boost presidential powers once again (BBC. appendix D and Anieri (2006: 108) for expected future indications of alignments based on section 3. In 1994.2 and Madrid’s conception of the weight of ethnicity as a structuring cleavage. because of its ability to dismantle the Duma as a check on the presidency (cf. the Communist. were aware of this. the possibility of especially ethnic Russian secession was a possibility. it is possible to argue in favour of a classification of Russia as a civilian autocracy from the time of the creation of United Russia. Hence.3). and as described in section 4. Thus. where the popular change of the incumbent is unlikely. any further elaborations on the topic is not conducted.

appendix E). Kuchma still needed to create informal institutions in order to for his regime to function as he wanted (Way. though limited to its ethnic supporter base because of the cleavages structuring the Rada (cf.2. are considered a source of income similar to that of natural resources. which might indicate a new party of power in Ukraine. never manage to be elected more than once. yet it is not large enough to play a similar role as natural resources. Yet because of strong cleavages. and needed institutions such as processes designed to harass the opposition and falsify election results (ibid. Kuchma’s attempts to change it as well as the informal institutions indicate that his did not. To sum up. Rents from Russian gas on its way to the European market. As demonstrated in section 5. situates the different positions vis-` a-vis the negotiation regarding the constitution.). 1996. appendix E). However. Thus. eventhough these attempts were succesful. Ukraine does not have access to natural resources comparable to that of Russia’s. Janukovich. Kuchma could not attack the g opposition for critism.3). 2006: 92). won 175 seats in the Rada (cf. In the following election in 2007 one of the members of the alliance. Yet. Because of the strong cleavages. This is evidenced in the three. As depicted above regarding the constitution. Kuchma could not shape the constitution as he saw fit. albeit succesful. and the lack of a party of power. had he had a successful party of power. during its time. however. section 4. 2006: 88f). The alliance did. and 2000. deputies enjoyed. whereas the Russian constitution served Yeltsin well. and it is likely that any future Ukrainian party of power will face other significant blocs.During Kuchma’s tenure. the negative effect from such sources of income are more or less absent in Ukraine. assuming that Party of Regions is the next party of power. echoing Feher’s argument. This gave them a platform by which. strong cleavages manifested in a parliament prior to the approval of a constitution. It clearly shows that a parliament structured around 26 . is the deputies’ repeal of reforms (D’Anieri.). it lessened Kuchma’s need to weaken the Rada (D’Anieri. attempts. Thus. This is best evidenced in the pro-presidential and primarily ethnic Rusian supported alliance dubbed For a United Ukraine. the Party of Regions headed by former pro-Russian presidential candidate. it faced a significant opposition in the Timoshenko bloc in 2007 (cf. While the Duma is void of any significant opposition to United Russia. 2005: 133). Another indirect effect of the constitution. the constitution is changed in 1995. a real party of power never manifested. Kuchma’s arm-wrestling with the Rada could have been avoided. they could criticise Kuchma (ibid. Hence. This is also evidenced in the immunity.

Kuchma was not willing to accept the rules of democracy. They feared that foreign NGOs might attempt to incite a colour revolution just like the one neighbouring Ukraine experienced (Ambrosio. cleavages seem to be the explanan that most clearly determines Ukraine’s fate. democracy fares better in Ukraine because of the relatively more balanced institutions. Western leverage over Russia is best evidenced through the opening of the Russian market during Yeltsin’s tenure (Desai. Cleavages reduced the room that would otherwise have limited the ability of the parliament to act as a check on the presidency. 2005: 100). Especially the American Treasure invested a lot of political time on reforms. seemed to be very interested in following the constitution. The parliament on the other hand.stable cleavages are in a much better position to resist encroachments. The latter concept is expanded by Tolstrup (undated: 7f) as economic and technocratic or political among other. Thus. lies in the compromise made and hence the cleavages. 2009: 46). Russia has an interest in Ukraine because of the Russians and the Black 27 . Thus. the leverage was not as much a concern as foreign NGOs. and thus forcing the president outside the formal framework. It might also be worth noting that this situation enhanced the power of the Russian minority and their parties. Russian elites used the fear of a potential coup to crack down on independent NGOs such as those dealing with human rights and democracy (Ambrosio. which at times favoured a stronger presidency. In this section. Thus. The leverage dwindled as Russia’s GDP grew. which lends albeit limited credence to the alternative hypothesis HA. Another effect of these cleavages is that of the room for a party of power. Thus. he ”overthrew” the constitution through will. Whereas Russia is subject to a pressure from the West. 2009: 51). among the Ukrainian presidents. Ukraine is subject to a pressure from the West as well as Russia. they deemed necessary for Russia (Desai. only Yushenko seemed to respect the rules of democracy. 2005: 101). and linkage as the integration with a certain region (Levitsky and Way. The situation in Ukraine is different. Hence. and at numerous occassions. the question is briefly assessed through an evaluation of leverage or power to affect other contries. the foundation for those battles. 7 Considering an alternative explanation The theoretical model does not take external factors into consideration. described above. 2005: 21f). During Putin’s tenure. To postulate that the Ukrainian democracy is consolidated is premature.

yet failed. leverage and linkage is taken serious in both Russia and Ukraine. it gives at least a couple of points worth noting. it depends on the decision to utilise them to repress. The pro-Russian Kuchma’s sucessor.1 based on Ross’ arguments that natural resources impede democracy. United Russia and Janukovich’s Party of Regions established formal ties in order to help the party in the upcomming 2006 Rada elections. However. there is a strong Russian interest in Ukraine as well as space to exert influence. Despite being a brief interlude between the primary arguments of this paper and the discussion. The first position to discuss is Russias abundance of natural resources and its constitution. got extensive support from Russia for his election campaign. Thus. 8 Discussion and conclusion As depicted above in section 5 and 6. Ukraine. 2009: 145). which they do not want to loose (Ambrosio. The economic linkage between Russia and Ukraine is best evidenced through the Ukrainian natural resource dependecy. Instead Russia attempted to undermine Yushenko’s efforts to democratise by denouncing his attempts as well as adopting confrontational policies toward Kiev (Ambrosio. on the other hand managed to remain relatively balanced because of its party system and the lack of a party of power. yet as evidenced. The Orange Revolution is perhaps the best example of a time where Russia needed to influence Ukrainian politics. 2009: 135). the discussion focuses on the Russian failure to remain on a democracy consolidating path using Ukraine as a mirror. whereas the latter seems very susceptible to Russian influence. Ukraine is dependent on Russian energy (ibid. The former has shook of western leverage through growth in GDP albeit paranoia has made the Russian elite harass foreign NGOs. Thus. Thus. and the support of Janukovich. natural resources must be transferred to the political system through political actors.).2.1. Mainwaring and Shugart rightfully argue that much depends on the institutional design.Sea Fleet. yet 28 . Then-prime minister Timoshenko criticised the agreement as an illegal attempt to influence Ukrainian politics. albeit this influence is not succesful at times. whereas the technocratic linkage is depicted in the relationship between United Russia and Party of Regions. and ath the same time. Firstly. despite this support the pro-western Yushenko won. Janukovich. as shown in section 4.It is claimed in section 3. Russia failed to consolidate its democracy because of its imbalanced political system favouring the presidency.

There are not many young democracies with communist origin in these regions (cf. Russia is plagued by a volatile party system. are not very cohesive. even in functional democracies.3. volatility does not necessary damage the regime. which might lend crendence to the damaging effects of such parties. section 1 and the scope conditions).1 Diffusion versus the rest Until know the core explanations of this paper has been discussed. At the same time. As brought forth by Haspel et al. the Ukrainian case exemplifies a situation where the party system is perhaps too polarised thus making it very difficult for the presidency to have a fruitful relationship with the parliament. Thus.2 as intrinsic to the preservation of Ukrainian democracy as a structuring factor as well as preventing parties of power.2). Another criticism of natural resources as depicted by Ross and used in this paper. presidents can go outside the constitutional framework (cf. Thus. a party of power is not necessary a problem. Thus. the volatility Russia experiences are not necessary a democracy delimiting phenomenon. Thus it might be difficult to assess the impeding character of natural resources on newly created democracies. The Russian case evidences this as well. shown in the Ukrainian case. section 6.2 and Linz and Stepan). is primarily based on the Middle East and Latin America. The key argument within the framework of the scope conditions in favour of the resource curse. as Pedersen (1979: 9) shows. As D’Anieri puts it. However. 8. Parties of power are considered to have a negative effect on both the Russian and Ukrainian parliament. Kuchma does not need to weaken the Rada anymore (cf. This is depicted in both section 5 and section 6. there might be cases where fairly large and dominating parties. several consolidated western democracies go through periods of relatively high volatility vis-` a-vis the general norm. is the practice in Russia (cf. The best argument in favour of cleavages is that some cleavages seem to be a better foundation for a party system than others. section 5). Russian parties are more cohesive than expected. The strength and 29 . it seems evident that a Russian party of power damages the horizontal accountability of the Duma. The party system is considered a prime explanan in section 6. Neither the Russian nor Ukrainian party system seem to embody such cleavages.1. as depicted in section 2. On the other hand. However. diffusion is tested vis-` a-vis the rest. section 2. and Ukraine’s cleavages do not necessary benefit its regime. In the final part of this discussion. with the creation of For a United Ukraine. It depends on its cohesiveness.

However. albeit it might have something to do with the renewed wealth from the natural resources as depicted above. it is important to remember that Party of Regions is not a party that encapsulates the entire population.2 Conclusion The research question proped the puzzle of why Russia slided into autocracy whereas Ukraine did remain somewhat stable in the same period. section 6. And precisely these natural resources as well as the energy dependency might have made United Russia capable of making a deal with the potential party of power. but it is clear that the West succesfully exerted leverage over the Russian president. thus aligning them among proUkraine candidates.2). Hence. table 2. the acquisition and renationalisation of Russian natural resources gave it a chance to insulate itself from state-to-state pressure. The Ukrainian party system depicts a situation where Russian attempts to utilise leverage has been futile not only during the Orange Revolution. had they wanted it. A party of power (or even a dominating party such as the CPRF) might pose a serious problem for anyone attempting to utilise leverage in a parliamentarian setting. The resource wealth also helped Russia to build new organisations as well as ousting other organisations in order to protect the current Russian regime. It is not known whether the West attempted to influence the Russian Duma. This made it difficult to remain on a consoldiation path because of the imbalances created by these very scores. the ethnic Russians and their parties did not move forward with secession (cf. dominated by ethnic 30 . However. the question of resources bolster the diffusion explanation. In Russia. It might have been very difficult considering the domination of CPRF and later the proSoviet United Russia. Party of Regions.thus wealth certainly reduces any leverage any country might face. The ethnic-Russian parties could probably have received some support for secession. Thus. it has the potential of causing more harm than good to the Russian case. The straight forward answer is that Russia scored negatively on all the explanans and in particular on the party system and party of power (cf. if diffusion has any merit in this case. The lack of successful leverage vis-` a-vis the Russians in Ukraine might be explained by a weak Russia. 8. the party system showed stronger signs of volatility because of the economic cleavage than the Ukrainian. United Russia is clearly a party of power that is not susceptible to utilised leverage. Thus. but also during the first ten years of Ukrainian independence. Because of its pro-Russian stance it might alienate the ethnic Ukrainian population. as history has evidenced.

Section 7 and 8. If they are privatised. As evidenced in section 6. Hence. This is best depicted in the short term effect of the Orange Revolution and the return of the old modus operandi. were able to maintain a more stable system securing consolidation. While external factors are excluded in the theoretical model as depicted in figure 2. whereas Russian linkage is very clear in connection with Janukovich’s failed attempt to become Kuchma’s sucessor. a constitution not overly presidential. It seems evident that certain conditions qua the results of this paper must be fulfilled if succesful diffusion has to take place.cleavages. the real transformative effect of diffusion depends on the endurance of the state. yet they are not determining the outcome of neither Russia nor Ukraine. The Russian determined to continue to exert influence in Ukraine paid off as Janukovich later got elected. Thus. Especially the latter three explanans owe their postive score to the strong cleavages. and no party of power. and thus the elite cannot use them as depicted in section 7.1 show that there are signs of diffusion. The process tracing revealed that with the creation of United Russia. their effect was minor. It had no natural resources. and thus. leverage is most clear during Yeltsin’s tenure. Hence short term attempt leaves long term effects with the explanans. The theoretical model addresses democratic development in the long run. The first condition is the ownership of the natural resources. strong cleavags. this effect might be of minor importance. Such allies might enhance the chance of succesful diffusion. easy rents are not as accessible as if the state nationalised it. This is why the Orange Revolution is unimportant. Diffusion plays a role. In Russia. the oppositional character of the Russian Duma disappeared. yet depending on the commitment from the state exerting diffusion. yet its importance is dwarfed by that of party system and party of power. the model is not seriously impeded by the introduction of diffussion. The Ukrainian case reveals that Ukraine scored better on the explanans. 31 . if the West was involved in the Orange Revolution.1 the idea that natural resources impede democracy was somewhat confirmed. The second condition is related to that of the strength of allies such as strong parties in the state in question.

A Appendix I: Duma elections in 1993 and 1995 1993 1995 Seats 70 54 48 23 33 23 19 15 4 2 1 1 Party (17/7)† Communist Party Liberal Democratic Party Our home is Russia Yabloko Agrarian Party of Russia Power to the People Russia’s Choice Congress Russian Communities Ivan Rybkin Bloc Women of Russia Forward Russia! Pamfilova–Gurov–Lysenko Bloc Union of Labour Communists of the USSR Workers’ Self-Government Stanislav Govorukhin Bloc Russian Unity and Concord Seats† 157 51 55 45 20 9 9 5 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 1 1 77 Party (12) Russia’s Choice Liberal Democratic Party Communist Party Women of Russia Agrarian Party of Russia Yabloko Russian Unity and Concord Democratic Party of Russia Movement for Democratic Reforms Dignity and Charity Civic Union Future of Russia Independents 146 Independents Note: Parties marked with bold participated in more than one consecutive election. †) Total number of parties / Participated in the prior election. ‡) Involves both SMD and PR seats. Source: Rose (2011) 32 .

Source: Rose (2011) 33 . ‡) Involves both SMD and PR seats.B Appendix II: Duma elections in 1999 and 2003 1999 2003 Seats 113 73 68 29 17 20 7 2 2 1 1 1 114 Party (12/4)† United Russia Communist Party Motherland Liberal Democratic Party People’s Party Yabloko Agrarian Party of Russia PVR-RPZh: Rebirth–Party of Life Union of Right Forces New Course: Automobile Russia Development of Enterprise Great Russia-Eurasian Union Independents Seats‡ 222 52 37 36 17 4 2 3 3 1 1 1 68 Party (12/4) Commmunists Party Unity Fatherland–All Russia Union of Right Forces Liberal Democratic Party Yabloko Our Home Is Russia Movement in Support of the Army Russian People’s Union Party of Pensioners Russian Socialist Party Spiritual Heritage Independents Note: Parties marked with bold participated in more than one consecutive election. †) Total number of parties / Participated in the prior election.

Source: Rose (2011) 34 .C Appendix III: Duma elections in 2007 2007 Party (4/2)† United Russia Communist Party Liberal Democrats Fair Russia Independents Seats‡ 315 57 40 38 - Note: Parties marked with bold participated in more than one consecutive election. ‡) Involves both SMD and PR seats. †) Total number of parties / Participated in the prior election.

D Appendix IV: Rada elections in 1994 and 1998 1994± 1998∓ Seats 86 25 18 15 14 11 7 5 4 4 3 3 2 2 2 1 1 Party (19/3)† Communists Rukh Socialist / Village Popular democrats Hromada Greens Social Democrats (United) Progressive Socialists Agrarians National Front Reforms and Order Party of Regional Revival Forward Ukraine! Christian Democratic Party NEP Social liberal union Working Ukraine Razom Menshe sliv Seats‡ 122 46 34 29 23 19 17 16 8 5 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 116 Party (17) Communists Rukh Peasant Party Interregional bloc for reforms Socialist party Republican Party Congress of Ukrainian nationalists Communist party of Crimea Party of Democratic Renewal Labour Party Democratic Party Ukranian National Assembly Social Democratic Party Civic Congress Conservative Republican Party Christian Democratic Party Soyuz Independents 136 Independents Note: Parties marked with bold participated in more than one consecutive election. ‡) Involves both SMD and PR seats. Source: ±) Bojcun (1995: 239) ∓) Birch and Wilson (1999: 1040) 35 . †) Total number of parties / Participated in the prior election.

party of Ukraine (United) Socialist Party of Ukraine Timoshenko bloc Democratic Party of Ukraine Unity Party of National Economic Revival Ukrainian Marine Party Independents Note: Parties marked with bold participated in more than one consecutive election.People’s Self-defense Communist Party Lytvyn bloc Seats‡ 175 156 72 27 20 Party (10/2) Our Ukraine For a United Ukraine Communist party Soc. Source: ±)Herron and Johnson (2003: 19) ∓) Copsey (2008: 300) 36 . *) Re-run of parliamentarian election of 2006. †) Total number of parties / Participated in the prior election. dem.E Appendix V: Rada elections in 2002 and 2007 2002± 2007∓* Seats 110 101 66 24 22 22 4 3 1 1 93 Party (5/2)† Party of Regions Timoshenko bloc Our Ukraine . ‡) Involves both SMD and PR seats.

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