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Dev Diary #46 - Political Parties

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Good evening! Today we are finally ready to talk in detail about Political Parties. This has been a much-requested feature for Victoria 3, and indeed the political world would feel a little empty without the Whigs and Tories going at each other’s throats. We’ve listened, and some months ago we revealed that we were indeed working on implementing this feature. Today we are ready to talk about how Parties will factor into the political landscape of the game.

In Victoria 3, a Political Party is an alliance between Interest Groups. They appear in countries that have Elections, and are absent in countries without them, differentiating the experience and mechanics of democracies from autocracies. Interest Groups must be added or removed from government as a single bloc, which means that you’ll need to make strategic decisions about the makeup of your government and deal with the consequences. The Liberal Party may for instance contain both the Intelligentsia and the Industrialists, who will both back your plans to move toward a free market economy but diverge on the issue of child labor. Sometimes an opposition Interest Group might decide that it wants to join a Party currently in government (or vice versa) - in this circumstance, the Interest Group will leave their old Party and be marked as “wanting to join” their new party. This won’t force any Interest Group into or out of government, but if you decide to reform your government under these circumstances you must treat that Interest Group as being a member of the new Party, bringing them into or out of government as a single bloc.

The Republican Party in the USA is made up of an alliance between the Industrialists and the Intelligentsia, primarily opposing the ruling Democratic Party which is constituted by the Southern Planters and Petite Bourgeoisie.
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Just as Parties ally together when you form your government, they also share their Momentum in Elections, which determines their votes. If for instance the fascist leader of the Petite Bourgeoisie joins the Conservative Party and is caught up in a political scandal, the whole Party suffers the electoral consequences. On the other hand, as the Landowners begin to lose their political relevance in an increasingly industrialized economy they might cling to relevance by attaching themselves to the rising Fascist Party, who may bring them Political Power from the votes the whole Party gains in the Election.

The Whig Party, consisting of a large number of opposition IG’s, has landed themselves in a corruption scandal. Rowland Hill, leader of the Armed Forces and prominent Reformer, may have seriously harmed the entire bloc’s election campaign.
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During the Election Campaign period (which as you’ll recall lasts 6 months before the final votes are cast), you’re likely to get events relating to the various Party’s campaign efforts that can have a major impact on Momentum. These events are inspired by the campaigns and scandals of the period, such as Gladstone’s Midlothian campaign and the whistle-stop tours that became popular in the USA.

There are 11 potential Political Parties that your Interest Groups can join. At any given time, any combination of these parties might exist or not exist. Parties emerge and disband dynamically, so the political landscape can be very different between countries and playthroughs. The following Parties can emerge throughout the course of the game:
  • The Agrarian Party
  • The Anarchist Society
  • The Communist Party
  • The Conservative Party
  • The Fascist Party
  • The Free Trade Party
  • The Liberal Party
  • The Military Party
  • The Radical Party
  • The Religious Party
  • The Social Democratic Party

Many of these parties are aligned primarily around a particular Interest Group’s core ideologies, which other IG’s may join under the right circumstances. The Liberal Party for instance is the natural home of the Intelligentsia due to their Liberal Ideology, but they may be swayed towards other Parties under various circumstances. Other Parties are aligned more strongly with Leader Ideologies that emerge throughout the game, such as the Communist Party and the Radical Party. Each of these Parties has a variety of dynamic names based on national, cultural, and religious factors - for instance in Great Britain the Conservative Party is localized as the Tories, while in the USA they are known as the Democratic Party.

Interest Groups (IG’s) may join a Political Party if they are not Marginalized and if their country has any of the Laws that allow Elections. Which Political Party an Interest Group will join is determined by a wide variety of factors, some of which I’ll list here:
  • IG’s with the Republican, Radical, Market Liberal, or Reformer Leader Ideologies are much more likely to join the Liberal Party
  • The Industrialists are more likely to be drawn towards the Conservative Party if the country has public healthcare or schools, or when voting laws allow the lower strata to vote.
  • Weaker IG’s might join the Agrarian Party alongside the Rural Folk in a push to abolish Serfdom. Scandinavian countries are much more likely to develop an Agrarian Party.
  • In a Council Republic, IG’s led by Anarchist leaders might leave the Communist Party if the country’s ruler is a Vanguardist.
  • When an IG with a Fascist leader becomes powerful, weaker conservative IG’s might join the Fascist Party in a bid to retain their political relevance.
  • If a powerful IG has a Social Democratic leader, weaker leftist IG’s may fall in line behind their more moderate cousins. Likewise, weaker Social Democrats might join a stronger Communist Party.

To summarize: in Victoria 3, Interest Groups band together into Political Parties for the purposes of elections and forming governments. There are many dynamic names and conditions that work to create plausible and flavourful Parties no matter which direction you choose to guide your country.

That’s all for today! Join us next week when Mikael will talk about the mechanics behind Religious Conversion and Cultural Assimilation.
 
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[...]

If a powerful IG has a Social Democratic leader, weaker leftist IG’s may fall in line behind their more moderate cousins. Likewise, weaker Social Democrats might join a stronger Communist Party.

That brings me to a question i've had for a while.
How hardcore egalitarian could you possibly go within Victoria 3?

I mean, obviously there is political conflict involved in at least getting there, but hypothetically speaking how far could you go? (assuming you would deal appropriately with turmoil or economic loss that this might bring)

There is not really a historic precedent for a hyper-egalitarian society on any larger scale, so i'd be interested in what Vicky3 would allow in the base game.
 
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antidualist

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So, out of curiousity, which parties did you select for the Russian parties? I'm especially thinking about the Mensheviks, Trudoviks and SRs, all of which could arguably be Social Democratic. (I'm assuming the communist party will be the Bolsheviks). It does seem like this way, either the Mensheviks or the SRs will be absent.
SR would arguably be the agrarian party given their support came largely from the peasentry.
 
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Good Development diary.
 

Morrowind3

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I really love the fact that industrialists are supporting the conservatives if we have healthcare and lower strata voting.
This is an accurate description.
You only support the liberal idea of expanding the rights of persons, until you have what you want, after that you tend to be happy with the status quo and ready to defend it.
Didn't quite follow that, actually. What's the stake of industrialists in public healthcare and lower strata voting? I figure privatized healthcare and middle strata voting is what they would want
 
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I have some reservations about the "religious party". I understand what it intends to do : represent the rise, in the end of the period, of the Christian democracy. I can guess that the Italian Peopl's Party, the french Popular Democratic Party, the Austrian social-chtistian party would be these kind of religious party (even if they were often at odds with the clatholic hierarchy, but it's another matter). However, I wonder how the case of countries with several religious groupes of comparable size will be handeled in that matter. Let's see a few examples :
- Germany : There is a cross-class party established around a religious identity, the Zentrum, really the poster child for the "Religious party",excepit it's established around a minority religious group, while the religious IG is, as far as I understand, always the majority religion. In case of Germany, the majority lutherian interests were more in line with traditional conservative parties.
- Netherlands : There were several religious party designed around confessional lines (RKSP for catholics, ARP for protestants, CHU for hardline conservative protestants who hated catholics). Cooperation between them were not something easy. They didn't form a unified "religious" bloc in parliament.

I really, really hope that all religious pops won't be lumped in a big "religious" IG, which form a big "religious" party. I would be immersion-breaking as hell.
 
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Hi, is there no absolutist/monarchist/reactionary party? Given the time period it would make sense as legitimist movements were still quite prominent, specially in the early game.

In Spain we had the Carlists for example, and even though they mostly attempted to achieve power through war, they also participated in elections.
 
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Didn't quite follow that, actually. What's the stake of industrialists in public healthcare and lower strata voting? I figure privatized healthcare and middle strata voting is what they would want

It really depends. But, a general rule of thumb with business’s opinion on government expenditures is that they generally don’t mind the government spending more and raising taxes - as long as it costs their competition at least as much as it costs them. So public healthcare is generally something business groups like.

As for voting, I’ll have to defer to those more familiar with European industrialization, as it was the norm for the US through the whole game period. I do know that Andrew Carnegie’s father was politically listless when he brought his family to America because all the causes he fought for in the UK were already achieved in the US.
 
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Didn't quite follow that, actually. What's the stake of industrialists in public healthcare and lower strata voting? I figure privatized healthcare and middle strata voting is what they would want
I don't want to get into actual todays politics, but in general the industrialist IG wants their workers to have no say in the affairs of the state while they are of course opposed to anything that would diminish their income
 
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- Germany : There is a cross-class party established around a religious identity, the Zentrum, really the poster child for the "Religious party",excepit it's established around a minority religious group, while the religious IG is, as far as I understand, always the majority religion. In case of Germany, the majority lutherian interests were more in line with traditional conservative parties.
sorry to correct you here, but you are confusing the Zentrum with the CDU.
The Zentrum was a dedicated catholic party, the CDU has been the logical evolution when Konrad Adenauer amongst others had decided that for the good of christianity in Germany there needs to be a christian political party that isn't favoring one form of christianity over the other.
 
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I assume that religious parties will primarily focus on religious issues first and foremost. A Christian Democrat would probably fall under the social democratic party, for instance, rather than religious. At least that’s how I interpet the dev diary, anyway.
 
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I'm interested in how the scandals will work. Looking at your example: a prominent member is found to be corrupt - how is that decided by the game? Was he actually corrupt (like had a trait a player could see or something) and there was a chance that he would be discovered during the election campaign? Or does the game just choose a random party member and go - that guy, he was corrupt all along, deal with it!

In other words: does being corrupt mean something for a leader outside of elections, or does it only matter in elections and therefore elections generate who is corrupt and who isn't?
 
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Captain Frakas

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Labour parties are essentially Social Democratic parties. I believe that some countries will use "Labour Party" as their dynamic name for the Social Democratic Party.

It isn't really correct albeit it doesn't have much consequences in the game, I presume.
Labour parties are created by workers' unions themselves in order to extend the unionist struggle to the civic struggle. Classical case: the British Labour Party

Social democratic parties are created outside workers' unions and, then, integrate them under the party's authority, in order to extend the civic struggle bases through the unionist struggle. Classical case: the Social-Democratic Party of Germany (SPD)

Socialist parties are created and kept separated from workers' unions in order to let the civic struggle independent from the unionist struggle and vice versa. Classical case: the French Socialist Party (PSF)

So labour parties aren't "essentially" social democratic parties. They fundamentally differs in what makes characteristic a labour party and what makes characteristic a social democratic party.
 
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$ilent_$trider

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Worst case scenario, we can always mod the names of the parties. I would just hope that in such a scenario, that is basically cosmetic, it wouldn't block achievements
 
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Borgratz

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You absolutely can, but your government will not likely be very legitimate!

How much of a problem is that? The way you described it, it sounded like you are not really being punished for staging a coup and breaking the core mechanics of your countries goverment, but it's more like "some interest groups, will be mad, because you will enact the wrong kind of policies now".

And it should be an absolutely country breaking event, if you pick a party that doesn't have the required votes to form a majority as your new goverment.
 
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Thure

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Hi, is there no absolutist/monarchist/reactionary party? Given the time period it would make sense as legitimist movements were still quite prominent, specially in the early game.

In Spain we had the Carlists for example, and even though they mostly attempted to achieve power through war, they also participated in elections.
Reactonaries were the most nonsensical part of Victoria 2. I'm happy that they are gone and a reactionary party wouldn't be very logicial as own party.

And monarchists can be in all parties, I don't think we need a own monarchism party. In some countries the Agrarian party would be monarchists in other countries the Religious Party would monarchists and in some countries nearly all parties would be monarchist. It should depend on the political ideas of the IGs and not be a own party as I already said some pages earlier.
 
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luxfelix

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I'm interested in how the scandals will work. Looking at your example: a prominent member is found to be corrupt - how is that decided by the game? Was he actually corrupt (like had a trait a player could see or something) and there was a chance that he would be discovered during the election campaign? Or does the game just choose a random party member and go - that guy, he was corrupt all along, deal with it!

In other words: does being corrupt mean something for a leader outside of elections, or does it only matter in elections and therefore elections generate who is corrupt and who isn't?

Maybe the longer they are in power, the more corrupt they become?
 
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luxfelix

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I assume that religious parties will primarily focus on religious issues first and foremost. A Christian Democrat would probably fall under the social democratic party, for instance, rather than religious. At least that’s how I interpet the dev diary, anyway.

And, by extension, issues regarding education and dependents?
 
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Revan F

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sorry to correct you here, but you are confusing the Zentrum with the CDU.
The Zentrum was a dedicated catholic party, the CDU has been the logical evolution when Konrad Adenauer amongst others had decided that for the good of christianity in Germany there needs to be a christian political party that isn't favoring one form of christianity over the other.
When i said "poster child" i mean as a party focused on a specific religious identity, while maybe being the only cross-class party of Germany in that period. Indeed it was focused on catholicism and that is the issue I raised. As catholics were a religious minority in the second Reich, while, as far as I know, religious IG are derived from the religious majority. But indeed you are right that the CDU was an attempt to unite all christians in a big tent party
I assume that religious parties will primarily focus on religious issues first and foremost. A Christian Democrat would probably fall under the social democratic party, for instance, rather than religious. At least that’s how I interpet the dev diary, anyway.
That would be very strange. Christian democrats and socialists were often at odds regarding issues like secularism and education. Heck, being a socialist was, at the time, a valid justification for an excommunication from the Catholic church
 
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