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Election promise

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An election promise or campaign promise is a promise or guarantee made to the public by a candidate or political party that is trying to win an election.

Across the Western world, political parties aren't highly likely to fulfill their election promises.[1] In the United States, platform positions offer important clues as to the policies that U.S. parties will enact. Over the past 30 years, Democratic and Republican congresspeople voted in line with their respective party platforms 74% and 89% of the time, respectively.[2]

Fulfilling promises[edit]

A 2017 study in the American Journal of Political Science found that for 12 countries (Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States) found that political parties fulfill their promises to voters to a considerable extent:[1]

Parties that hold executive office after elections generally fulfill substantial percentages, sometimes very high percentages, of their election pledges, whereas parties that do not hold executive office generally find that lower percentages of their pledges are fulfilled. The fulfillment of pledges by governing executive parties varies across governments in ways that reflect power-sharing arrangements. The main power-sharing arrangement that impacts pledge fulfillment distinguishes between single-party governments and coalitions, not between governments with and without legislative majorities. We found the highest percentages of pledge fulfillment for governing parties in the United Kingdom, Sweden, Portugal, Spain, and Canada, most of which governed in single-party executives. We found lower percentages for governing parties in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Bulgaria, Ireland, and Italy, most of which governed in coalitions. Pledge fulfillment by U.S. presidential parties lies at the higher end of coalition governments, which suggests that U.S. presidents are more constrained than governing parties in single-party parliamentary systems, but less constrained than most governing parties in multiparty coalitions.

Other research on the United States suggests that Democratic and Republican congresspeople voted in line with their respective party platforms 74% and 89% of the time, respectively.[2]

Examples of broken promises[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Parmet, Herbert S. (December 1989). The Devil We Knew: Americans and the Cold War. Little Brown & Co. ISBN 978-0-19-509377-3. p. 116 "Nixon didn't invent the phrase, which originated with a reporter looking for a lead to a story summarizing the Republican candidate's (hazy) promise to end the war without losing. But neither did he disavow the term, and it soon became a part of the campaign. When pressed for details, Nixon retreated to the not indefensible position that to tip his hand would interfere with the negotiations that had begun in Paris."; Parmet, Herbert S. (December 1989). Richard Nixon and His America. Little Brown & Co. ISBN 978-0-316-69232-8. Stated evidence suggests that Nixon never used the term, and that it actually came from a question by a voter at a New Hampshire campaign stop.
  2. ^ "Nixon: Vietnam Shows Need for 'New Diplomacy'". Cedar Rapids Gazette (Iowa). March 20, 1968. p. 62.
  3. ^ Morin, Relman (March 14, 1968). "Nixon Plans to Unfold Peace Plan When He Campaigns Against LBJ". Press Telegram (Long Beach, Cal.). p. 10.
  4. ^ Nixon, Richard (1978). RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon. ISBN 9780448143743. p. 298
  5. ^ Coleman, Fred (1997). The Decline and Fall of Soviet Empire : Forty Years That Shook The World, From Stalin to Yeltsin. St. Martin's Griffin. ISBN 978-0-312-16816-2. p. 203
  6. ^ Anderson, Terry; Small, Melvin (1990). "Review of Johnson, Nixon, and the Doves". The American Historical Review. 95 (3): 944–945. doi:10.2307/2164514. JSTOR 2164514.
  7. ^ Small, Melvin (April 1988). Johnson, Nixon, and the Doves. Rutgers University Press. ISBN 978-0-8135-1288-4. p. 174; Zaroulis, Nancy and Gerald Sullivan (1984). Who Spoke Up? American Protest Against the War in Vietnam, 1963-1975. Doubleday. ISBN 978-0-03-005603-1. p. 217
  8. ^ Small p. 162
  9. ^ Small p. 179
  10. ^ Strauss, Robert S. (Summer 1984). "What's Right with U. S. Campaigns". Foreign Policy. 55 (55): 3–22. doi:10.2307/1148378. JSTOR 1148378.
  11. ^ See U.S. presidential election, 1900 Misleading Philippine War claims by the Republicans
  12. ^ Small, p. 166; Riegle, Don (1972). O Congress. Doubleday. p. 20; Kalb, Marvin and Bernard (1974). Kissinger. Hutchison. p. 120; Hersh, Seymour M. (1983). The Price of Power: Kissinger in the Nixon White House. Summit Books. ISBN 978-0-671-44760-1. p. 119
  13. ^ Solomon, Norman (December 22, 2005). "A New Phase of Bright Spinning Lies About Iraq". Common Dreams. Archived from the original on December 24, 2005.
  14. The Most Controversial Political Campaigns in World History


  1. ^ a b Thomson, Robert; Royed, Terry; Naurin, Elin; Artés, Joaquín; Costello, Rory; Ennser-Jedenastik, Laurenz; Ferguson, Mark; Kostadinova, Petia; Moury, Catherine (2017-07-01). "The Fulfillment of Parties' Election Pledges: A Comparative Study on the Impact of Power Sharing" (PDF). American Journal of Political Science. 61 (3): 527–542. doi:10.1111/ajps.12313. ISSN 1540-5907.
  2. ^ a b Stein, Jeff (2016-07-12). "We asked 8 political scientists if party platforms matter. Here's what we learned". Vox. Retrieved 2016-07-19.
  3. ^ How Headline Writers Read Bush's Lips, Reading Eagle, July 5, 1990, p.9.
  4. ^ John Howard's a lesson for second coming, The Australian, August 30, 2008.
  5. ^ Rebecca Leung (January 9, 2004). "Bush Sought 'Way' To Invade Iraq?, O'Neill Tells '60 Minutes' Iraq Was 'Topic A' 8 Months Before 9-11". CBS News.
  6. ^ "Campaign against McCreevy's Cuts".
  7. ^ "Julia Gillard did not lie about Carbon Tax (There is No Carbon Tax in Australia)". YouTube.
  8. ^ "Sunday Age publishes fake quote excusing Gillard's lie". 30 June 2013.
  9. ^ "Fionnán Sheahan". April 2011.
  10. ^ Kevin Liptak (February 23, 2016). "Obama gives Congress Guantanamo closure plan". CNN.
  11. ^ Gregory Krieg (10 October 2016). "Trump threatens to jail Clinton if he wins election". CNN. Retrieved 2017-04-23.
  12. ^ "Trump team won't pursue charges against Hillary Clinton". BBC News. 2016-11-22. Retrieved 2017-04-23.
  13. ^ ITV (6 September 2021). "'Absolutely nobody' will challenge National Insurance hike to pay for social care, says minister". ITV News. Retrieved 17 September 2021.
  14. ^ CHIP (29 August 2023). "Öğrenciye vergisiz telefon planı: İlk detaylar belli oldu". CHIP Online. Retrieved 1 September 2023.