Landing Votes explores the conditions under which democratic Latin American governments address persistent political and economic inequities. The book points out a surprising "coincidence": nearly every extension of suffrage to the rural poor occurred at the same time as land reform. Politicians did not merely react to peasants' demands; rather, they sought political power by extending the right to vote while redistributing land. The book concludes that party institutionalization enhanced the prospects for reforms by holding politicians accountable. More significant reforms occurred which benefited more of the rural poor where institutionalized parties competed for their votes.

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