Issue voting in the Republic of China on Taiwan's 1992 legislative Yuan election
In the past few years, the Republic of China on Taiwan has undergone a quiet transformation from an authoritarian to a democratic system. On 19 December 1992, forty-five years after the first legislative yuan election, voters went to the poll to elect the entire body of the second legislative yuan. The 1992 election marks a turning point in the ROC's electoral history. This paper examines the role that issues played in that election. The Kuomintang and the Democratic Progressive Party competed on four main issues during the 1992 legislative yuan election. Based on the survey results, the paper depicts the salience of these issues to individual respondents, the distribution of respondents preferences, and their perceptions of the two parties' policy positions on these issues. The authors then test whether these issues play an important role in explaining the variation in voters' evaluation of the two parties, and, indirectly, their vote choices. The results show that among the four issues included in the model, the democracy/stability issue has the greatest impact on voters' evaluations of parties, followed by the economic and national identity issues, with the environmental issue having the smallest impact. In addition, the paper examines the role of issue salience in affecting voters' comparative evaluation of the parties. The results show that on the economic, national identity, and democracy/stability issues, difference in salience between those who think of the issue as most important and those who think otherwise contributes to a difference in the impact of issues on party evaluation between the two groups, but on the environmental issue it does not.
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