12 thoughts on “Regarding the anti-incumbency factor”

  1. While I wouldn’t go as far to suggest that the term itself is wrong in some way, Indian political parties do indeed misuse it quite often.

    I just did a Google search for “anti-incumbency” and 7 out of the top 10 results were from India (8, if you take out the Wikipedia entry). And the trend continues even as you go down.

  2. BOK

    I’ve modified the sentence…to say that it is a misnomer. (To say that it is “wrong” is wrong. More correctly, it is inappropriate).

    It’s just a fancy word the political punditry came up with to explain why incumbents are voted out. Another example of the common error of mistaking correlation for causation.

    (NB: It’s a Sunday, so you’ll all excuse me if I can’t produce satisfactory answers to the question “What about West Bengal?”)

    Update: This is comment number 11111

  3. Nitin,


    Our politicians are in love with the term. When in doubt, just say “anti-incumbency” – that seems to be the rule.

  4. Actually anti-incumbency has now come more or less to mean “non performing”/”incompetent” – what else can you expect from most Governments in India ?

    BTW, Modi has won big in Gujarat primarily because he is seen as a very competent leader – kind of a mordern day record for a State Govt to be re-elected for performance reasons alone.

  5. There does seem to be truth to the anti-incumbency==anti-incompetency hypothesis.

    Delhi’s Sheila Dixit won on the basis of performance as did CB Naidu once in Andhra. Modi’s victory is heartening because if anti-incumbency were to become settled wisdom, then our netas would only feather their nests for their next 7 generations (I mean, even more than they do now) because, why bother if you’re gonna get voted out anyway? Might as well stay 5 full yrs and suck the treasury and contracts and commissions dry….

  6. Pingback: varnam

Comments are closed.