The decline of traditional clientelist parties : the case of the Partido da Frente Liberal in Brazil
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In this report, I analyze the worldwide decline of traditional clientelist political parties over the past century. To do this, I investigate the collapse of the Partido da Frente Liberal (PFL), a traditional clientelist party in Brazil who has experienced a rapid decline in support over the past decade. I argue that the PFL (renamed the Democratas in 2007) has entered a decline over the past decade because spending on social programs by the Brazilian federal government has reduced extreme poverty considerably over that same period. This reduction of poverty, in turn, has led many poor Brazilians to desert the PFL/D for parties such as the Partido dos Trabalhadores (PT). I conduct multivariate statistical analysis on an original dataset to support my argument.