Portuguese Emigrants’ Political Representation: The Challenges of the External Vote
New and Old Routes of Portuguese Emigration. Uncertain Futures at the Periphery of Europe
Over the last few decades, emigrants all over the world have gained expanded voting rights. Despite the normative debates about this issue, there are few empirical studies on why states decide to implement external voting and how electoral systems perform. This chapter seeks to fill this gap by looking at the Portuguese case. Our study suggests that a combination of political and socio-economic factors explains the implementa tion of external voting. On the other hand, the interests of political parties and the low level of civil society engagement are key factors in the failure of both electoral reforms and attempts to overcome the shortcomings of external voting.
External voting,Emigrants,Representation,Electoral systems,Voting rights,Portugal