Inter-party Negotiations in a Time of Crisis: What Hinders an Effective Dialogue?
The Peculiarity of the Georgian Electorate: A Demand for Polarization or a Political Party Agenda?
Almost all respondents agree that the electorate itself is extremely polarized in a way that political parties are often, “suppliers” of the public’s demand for polarization with political parties responding to the electorate’s demand for radical rhetoric. From the perspective of political party representatives, and more so in case of small and new actors, radical rhetoric is a “compelling” strategy, without which there is a risk that, due to political competition, their message will not reach the electorate as effectively as one of their competitors. Therefore, radical narratives remain the only way to attract the electorate’s attention and provoke their emotions. From the political parties’ perspective, these radical narratives make their positions seem more moral, stable, and trustworthy.
However, against the background of the aforementioned expectations, recent public opinion polls revealed that in reality, public demand is not linked to confrontational and explicitly polarized political factors. According to the Caucasus Research Resource Centers (CRRC), the Georgian public is much more favorable towards political processes based on collaboration (chart 1) and multi-party representation in the parliament (chart 2).
Chart 1: Caucasus Barometer. Available at: https://caucasusbarometer.org/en/nd2020ge/IMPAPCEO/