Populism and Party Politics

Is the populist movement good for democracy?


Populism — the deep public mistrust of political parties and other so-called “establishment” institutions — is disrupting traditional politics in the United States as well as abroad. Analysts and academics say Donald Trump demonstrated populism's reach by winning the Republican presidential nomination, while Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders waged what often was described as a left-wing populist challenge to Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination. Populist movements have spread across Europe with the rise of anti-establishment politicians in several countries, underscored by the United Kingdom's June “Brexit” vote to leave the 28-nation European Union. But the meaning of populism has become elastic, as it is applied to a wide range of politicians and movements. Today's populists are amplifying many of the movement's earlier traditions through heavy ...

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