Citizen satisfaction with democracy is greater when parties offer choices that are congruent with voter preferences. But are citizens content with simply having a party that represents their views or does their satisfaction depend on whether that party can also be instrumental in implementing policies? We argue that instrumentality moderates the effect of ideological congruence on democratic satisfaction. Combining an analysis of cross-national survey data with an experimental conjoint design, we find that citizens able to vote for a congruent party with a chance of entering government are more satisfied with democracy, whereas congruence without instrumentality has no such effect.
- political choice
- satisfaction with democracy