Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > It's Still Not the Economy Stupid!: An Examination of Political Party Support for European Integration
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Since the early 1990s, there has undoubtedly been an increase in euroskepticism, both among national political parties and among the general public. The literature has identified two general causes---concerns over national identity and utilitarian cost/benefit analyses. Originally, utilitarian concerns were thought to be the primary motivator, but research post-Maastricht introduced the idea that citizens' national identity may also be a driver. Recent research has concluded that, indeed, both are strong predictors of euroskepticism. But which offers more insight into the motivations behind euroskepticism? And in a broader sense, how does the issue of "Europe" relate to the more well-established cleavages along with political parties compete? Drawing on data from the 2010 Chapel Hill Expert Survey and utilizing OLS regression, I attempt to answer these questions. Overall, I find that national identity concerns---rather than socioeconomic concerns---are the more potent predictor of euroskeptic tendencies. But more importantly, I demonstrate that competition over European integration has been largely integrated into the broader cultural and economic cleavages that define domestic political competition.