Photo: “20151030 Syrians and Iraq refugees arrive at Skala Sykamias Lesvos Greece 2“, by Ggia licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0. Hue modified from the original
Vaughan, Kenneth R. “Anti-Immigrant Sentiment and Opposition to Democracy in Europe.” Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies (2020): 1-17.
Years of declining support for democracy and the election of leaders with authoritarian characteristics in liberal-democracies continues to trouble scholars. Current narratives may understate the importance of nativist beliefs in these developments by treating this as a byproduct of broader political movements. I contribute to the understanding of nativism’s role in democratic beliefs by arguing for isolating nativism from broader political movements when studying its consequences. Even when controlling for populism, far-right political affiliation, and important national-level variables, anti-immigrant sentiment is significantly associated with increased illiberal-democratic political preferences and decreased evaluations of the importance of living in a democracy.