Coalitions	in	Collision:	Malaysia's	13th	General	Elections
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Coalitions in Collision: Malaysia's 13th General Elections

by Johan Saravanamuttu

After the watershed 2008 election when the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition lost its customary two-thirds control of parliamentary seats, there was the not unreasonable expectation that BN would slip even further in the much-anticipated Thirteenth General Election of 2013, which is the subject of this book. In the event, the BN lost the popular vote to the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) but still retained the reins of government. In this book, prominent Malaysian specialists and experts will provide the reader with fresh insights into the evolving character of electoral politics by delving into its failing model of consociationalism, the extent of malapportionment in the electoral system and its effects on outcomes, how 'new politics' continue to meet the resistance of old modes of political behaviour, the path-dependence analysis of twin-coalition politics, the significance of the FELDA vote bank, the issues animating electoral politics in Sabah, Sarawak, Terengganu and Johor, why the PR continues to command urban support, the role of the biased mainstream media, and details of the campaign strategies of both coalitions. In this new study of Malaysia's electoral politics, it is evident that the ruling coalition has lost its first-mover advantage and is only able to hold on to power due to the first-past-the-post (FPTP) single member plurality electoral system. This sort of system has given rise, in the parlance of electoral studies, to 'manufactured majorities', that is, electoral outcomes that confer a majority of seats (simple or large) to a single party or a coalition of parties without commanding a majority of the popular vote. Malaysia's FPTP system, imbued as it is with a generous proportion of 'rural weightage', continues to favour the BN, oftentimes generating large manufactured parliamentary majorities. While some may argue that electoral politics have reached an impasse, after two general elections, Malaysia's twin-coalition system seems to have gained some traction and, thanks to its federalism, with the PR having considerable control of state governments in the Malay heartland and of the more urbanized states of Selangor and Penang.

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Preliminary pages
1. Introduction: The Electoral System's Impact on Outcomes
2. New Politics or Old Politics in New Clothing?
3. Power Sharing Politics and the Electoral Impasse in GE13
4. Mal-apportionment and the Electoral Authoritarian Regime in Malaysia
5. The Political Economy of FELDA Seats: UMNO's Malay Rural Fortress in GE13
6. Fragmented but Captured: Malay Voters and the FELDA Factor in GE13
7. Watchdogs or Lapdogs? Monitoring Malaysia's Media Coverage of GE13
8. The 'Pek Moh' Factor and the Sarawak Parliamentary Seats
9. The Appeal and Future of the 'Borneo Agenda' in Sabah
10. The Case of Titiwangsa: Changing Features of Election Campaigns?
11. Terengganu and Kelantan: The Separation and Convergence of Blurred Identities
12. A Jewel in the Barisan Nasional Crown: An Electoral Analysis of Four Parliamentary Seats in Johor
13. Whither Malaysia: Re-thinking the Future of Malaysian Politics
Index

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Product Details

  • Number of Pages : 309
  • Publisher : Institute of Southeast Asian Studies
  • Weight : 500g
  • Product Code : 9789814620406
  • Dimension : 152 x 229 mm

About Author

Johan Saravanamuttu

Johan Saravanamuttu is Visiting Senior Fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore.