By Wendy Hunter
Wendy Hunter explores civil-military relatives in Brazil following the transition to civilian management in 1985. She files a marked, and wonderful, decline within the political strength of the militia, at the same time they've got remained fascinated about nationwide coverage making. To account for the good fortune of civilian politicians, Hunter invokes rational-choice thought in arguing that politicians will contest even strong forces as a way to achieve common electoral aid. Many observers anticipated Brazil's fledgling democracy to stay less than the enterprise course of the army, which had tightly managed the transition from authoritarian to civilian rule. Hunter rigorously refutes this traditional knowledge via demonstrating the power of even a susceptible democratic regime to extend its autonomy relative to a once-powerful army, due to the electoral incentives that encourage civilian politicians. in response to interviews with key members and on wide archival study, Hunter's research of advancements in Brazil indicates a extra positive view of the way forward for civilian democratic rule in Latin the USA.
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Extra info for Eroding military influence in Brazil: politicians against soldiers
In Brazil, they often seek election to lower political offices. 23 The presence of a powerful and politically active military can pose a threat to all three of these objectives. A military prone to political meddling is an especially vexing problem for presidents. The future careers of presidents, more than those of legislators, depend on achieving programmatic goals that resonate well with public opinion. If reelection is at all a goal, presidents must gather cross-regional support. The programmatic incentives facing presidents include a host of public-policy initiatives over which military influence could be problematic and electorally costly.
If change is to occur, quick action must be taken before the transition period comes to a close and patterns and practices inherited from the previous regime have a chance to congeal. After these windows of opportunity close, stability prevails and profound political change, which would reshape the institutional framework, is unlikely. If left unchallenged during the regime change, previous institutional patterns are believed to be reaffirmed and given a strong foundation to persist. A historical institutionalist perspective would predict that the armed forces would be able to preserve their power and set limits to popular sovereignty in the new democracy if they and other conservative elites managed to retain strong institutional prerogatives throughout a transition from authoritarian rule.
28 Comparatively speaking, Brazilian politics is highly personalistic and weakly institutionalized. The party system is extremely fragmented. Parties themselves lack internal cohesion. The 1989 presidential race provided strong testimony to the weakness of party affiliation and the negligible role that parties play in structuring Brazilian politics. Fernando Collor de Mello created a new party, the PRN (Partido de Reconstrução Nacional or National Reconstruction Party), for the sole purpose of running for president.
Eroding military influence in Brazil: politicians against soldiers by Wendy Hunter