Ethnic Voting Behavior of Taiwan's Indigenous Electorate: A Case Study of the 2012 Mountain Indigenous Legislators Election
One of the characteristics of indigenous politics in Taiwan is that groups with a larger population usually control more political resources. It has always been the case that Taiwan's indigenous legislators usually come from the plain dwelling Amis and mountain dwelling Atayal and Paiwan. The explanation for this phenomenon is that indigenous people have a tendency toward ethnic voting. This argument is empirically based on election results. However, using aggregate level data to make inferences about individual voters' voting behavior might give rise to a problem of ecological fallacy.
Therefore, this study explores the indigenous people's voting behavior by using data from the 2013 Indigenous Political Behaviors and Attitudes Survey. The model indicates that mountain indigenous people had a tendency toward ethnic voting in the 2012 Legislators Election, and the pan-Atayal were more willing to vote for the candidates from their ethnic group than for candidates from the Paiwan. This phenomenon makes us understand that a given candidate has an "inner territory" which consists of his/her hometown and nearby townships, and this is one substantial feature of ethnic voting behavior for indigenous electoral politics. For other indigenous voters who are neither Paiwan nor pan-Atayal, party identification is the key factor having impact on their voting participation.