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The Urban/Rural Divide in Slovenia’s Recent Election

Submitted by on April 2, 2012 – 2:45 pm 7 Comments |  
Several recent GeoNotes have emphasized the urban/rural divide in U.S. Republican presidential primary elections. The same pattern is evident elsewhere, and is illustrated in a particularly striking manner in the recent Slovenian Family Code Referendum. The new family law code, which had been passed by the Slovenian Parliament, extended the rights of same-sex couples and prohibited the corporal punishment of children. A conservative group called “Civil Initiative for the Family and the Rights of Children” opposed the law and collected enough signatures to force a referendum. In the resulting contest, the code was defeated, with 55 per cent of voters rejecting it.

The geographical patterns in the vote are clear. The new code was supported in almost all urban areas, and opposed in almost all rural districts. On the Electoral Geography 2.0 map posted here, I have added Slovenian’s largest cities to highlight the urban/rural divide. As can be seen, support for the measure was especially pronounced in Ljubljana, the capital city.  The only other tendency of note is the fact that voters along the southwestern border, an area heavily influenced by Italian culture, tended to support the measure more than those elsewhere in the country.

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