Political parties and democracy in Haiti
Jerbi, Matthew J.
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A nation attains democratic consolidation when democratic ideals become permanently established within its society. An institutionalized political party system is a prerequisite for democratic consolidation and is based on stable rules of interparty competition, parties with stable social roots, and party organizations independent of individuals' ambitions. Additionally, all actors must accord legitimacy to a party system in order for it to be institutionalized. This thesis focuses on the political party system in Haiti and how its lack of institutionalization has undermined the consolidation of democracy. It also examines the factors that are responsible for this lack of development. Such factors include the actions of Haitian elites, lack of social organization, and a lack of party development during the earliest stages of state building. The impact of United States foreign policies upon this nation's party system are examined in order to discover which policies have assisted party system institutionalization and which have hindered its development. While the entirety of Haitian political history is reviewed, an emphasis is placed upon United States policy since the 1991 ouster of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. In conclusion, this thesis recommends future United States policies designed to assist in the institutionalization of Haiti's political party system.
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