Shaping Post-War Ukraine's Political Regime: Competitive Authoritarianism or Turn to Presidentialism?

Published by Ingenta Connect

Ukraine's Political Regime

The current debates on the Russo-Ukrainian war concern mostly the geopolitical changes along the NATO-Russia axis, the rise of Ukraine as a regional leader in Europe and the European perspective of Ukraine. However, it pays to investigate how the present battlefield developments transform the domestic politics and society of Ukraine as these will be defining factors in the post-war reform and reconstruction. Drawing from the conceptual framework of George Tsebelis' theory of veto-players, this article aims to outline the changing institutional design of Ukraine in the face of increasing securitization of political agenda. Outlining the preferences of constitutional and informal veto-players by Tsebelis's conceptual toolkit, the article purports to show that the President and the military command converge on security and national defence issues but contest on the form of government. Essentially, Ukraine's post-war constitutional design is predicted to be transforming either into a 'competitive authoritarianism' construed along the lines of Steven Levitsky and Lucan A. Way or a fully presidential republic. However, the predicted scenario is that international pressure coupled with Ukraine's constitutional checks and balances will stand in the way of any future attempt to sway Ukraine's political regime into a more authoritarian framework. Due to the lack of prospective research in this area, polling research is used as a proxy for the trends of the political landscape in Ukraine.