Documents the emergence of a pattern of political instability in Latin America. Traditional military coups have receded in the region, but elected presidents are still ousted from power as a result of recurrent crises. Anibal Perez-Linan shows that presidential impeachment has become the main constitutional instrument employed by civilian elites to depose unpopular rulers. Based on detailed comparative research in five countries and extensive historical information, the book explains why crises without breakdown have become the dominant form of instability in recent years and why some presidents are removed from office while others survive in power. The analysis emphasizes the erosion of presidential approval resulting from corruption and unpopular policies, the formation of hostile coalitions in Congress, and the role of investigative journalism. This book challenges classic assumptions in studies of presidentialism and provides important insights for the fields of political communication, democratization, political behaviour, and institutional analysis.
Annibal Perez-Linan is currently an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Pittsburgh. Born in Argentina, Perez-Linan has conducted extensive research in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Venezuela. He has published articles in academic journals in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Egypt, Great Britain, Spain, the United States, and Uruguay. His most recent articles have been published in the Journal of Politics, Electoral Studies, and Comparative Political Studies.