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February 02, 2021 | 49 Pages | English | Georgia Dagher
The 2018 Lebanese Parliamentary Elections: What Do the Numbers Say? South 1 Electoral District: Saida and Jezzine

In the Lebanese parliamentary elections of 2018, the districts of Saida and Jezzine (South 1) saw a highly competitive race, leading to more diverse representation at the parliamentary level. Each of the winning parties and candidates owed their success to one confessional community, respectively: The Future Movement relied on the Sunni vote, the Free Patriotic Movement on the Christian votes, and the Popular Nasserist Organization—running with a candidate backed by Amal—received much higher levels of support among the Shia community. Some voters were also more mobilized than others. Sunni and Shia voters voted in significantly higher numbers than Christian voters, although there were variations within each sectarian group across cadastral areas. In Jezzine, where two confessional groups are represented by a seat, Maronite voters were much more likely to vote for a candidate from their own sect compared to Greek Catholics. Geographical variations were also present: Among each group, those in more homogeneous areas were significantly more likely to vote along sectarian lines. South 1 saw minor voting variations between women and men, but one notable difference was in support for women candidates. Two women candidates ran in South 1, and although their performances were highly unequal—the first was one of the most successful candidates across the country and the second was one of the least successful—they both received significantly higher support from women voters. Finally, the results of the votes in Jezzine point at incidents of vote rigging, particularly on the part of the Free Patriotic Movement: First, the party generally performed better in polling stations that recorded a lower share of invalid votes; and second, the list’s number of votes across polling stations were distributed in an irregular, non-uniform pattern—both things that do not normally occur in clean elections.

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