Rigidity of the far-right? Motivated social cognition in a nationally representative sample of Hungarians on the eve of the far-right breakthrough in the 2010 elections

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Abstract

We investigated the “rigidity of the right” hypothesis in the context of the far-right breakthrough in the 2010 Hungarian parliamentary elections. This hypothesis suggests that psychological characteristics having to do with need for security and certainty attract people to a broad-based right-wing ideology. A nationally representative sample (N = 1000) in terms of age, gender and place of residence was collected by means of the random walking method and face-to-face interviews. Voters of JOBBIK (n = 124), the radically nationalist conservative far-right party, scored lower on System Justifying Belief, Belief in a Just World (Global) and higher on Need for Cognition than other voters. Our results contradict the “rigidity of the right” hypothesis: JOBBIK voters scored, on many measures, opposite to what the hypothesis would predict.

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