GERMANY


Support for fundamental elements of democracy and democratic institutions is lower among German citizens with higher Populism Propensity Scores. By contrast, those with higher scores on Standard Survey Measures of Populism (SSMP) are more likely to support democracy and democratic institutions.

The contrast between PPS and SSMP measurements of attitudes toward democracy among citizens is one of the most important behavioral differences observed in these surveys. In all four countries, citizens with a higher PPS are less likely to support fundamental tenets of democracy. Conversely, in France, Germany, and Austria those who scored higher on SSMP are more likely to be supportive of democracy and democratic institutions.

There is one important caveat to this finding: While the difference in support for democracy by PPS and SSMP measurements is unmistakable throughout the data in France, Austria, Germany, and the Netherlands, the overall support for democracy and democratic institutions no matter where a citizen falls on either scale is still – at this time – quite strong.

 

The higher a German citizen’s PPS the less likely they are to say that it is important to live in a country that is governed democratically. By contrast, those with higher scores on SSMP are much more likely to prefer democratic governance. 

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To double check citizens’ commitment to democracy a standard question from the World Values Survey, which is used to estimate support for democracy and democratic forms of government, was also asked of German citizens. The results of this question track the other results.

The higher a German citizen’s PPS the less likely they are to say that “having a democratic political system” is a very good way of governing Germany.

 

In Germany, support for democratic governance does not vary by ideology. Instead, varying commitment to democracy among Germans is found when citizens are sorted by PPS and SSMP.

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The higher a German citizen’s PPS the less likely they are to say that a free press is important. By contrast, those with higher scores on SSMP are more likely to prefer living in a country with a free press. 

 

Again, support for a free press does not vary by ideology in Germany.

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The higher a German citizen’s PPS the less likely they are to say it is important to live in a country with a free judicial system. By contrast, those with higher scores on SSMP are more likely to prefer a free judicial system.

 

Once again, support for a free judicial system does not vary by ideology in Germany.

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German citizens with a higher PPS are more likely to say that “having the army rule the country” is a good way to govern Germany.  Those who score higher on SSMP are less likely to want the army ruling Germany.