Political party system institutionalization and democracy : the case of Panama
Taylor, Tarl W.
Bruneau, Thomas C.
Tollefson, Scott D.
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This thesis comparatively analyzes the level of political party institutionalization in Panama, and its impact on democracy in that country. In addition, the thesis examines the role that the United States has played in shaping Panama's transition to democracy. The thesis concludes that the initial signs and indicators of a healthy political party system are evident in Panama. Panama's political party institutionalization has moved from an inchoate category (1969 to 1989), to an advancing category after the U.S. intervention of 1989. Despite major obstacles, Panama's advancing level of political party institutionalization could lead to a fully institutionalized system and a consolidated democracy. The thesis also concludes that it is unlikely that Panama's political party system could have been further institutionalized without the U.S. intervention of 1989 and the subsequent U.S. policy of democratic engagement and enlargement. That institutionalization has facilitated the ongoing consolidation of democracy in Panama.
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