La Légitimité de la science politique. Construire une discipline, au-delà des clivages pages:81-100
When comparing the political landscape of Flanders and Wallonia, it is com-monly assumed that they strongly differ on the left-right dimension, both as a matter of public opinion and strength of political parties. In this view, the Flemish region is considered dominantly right-wing and the Walloon region is perceived as domi¬nantly left-wing. Regarding voting patterns and political representation, it is indeed hard to argue with this perspective. For example, at the federal elections of 2010, 57.4% of the Flemish votes went to right-wing parties, while 64.5% of the Walloon voters supported left-wing parties. However, we should not automat-ically assume that this difference in political representation translates directly to, or is reflected exactly by the ideological positions of the Flemish and Walloon population. In-deed, we can ask ourselves to what extent this regional difference in political power balance along the left-right ideological dimension is mirrored by attitudinal differ-ences between their respective populations.
This is precisely the question that is answered in this chapter, in the domains of economic right-left, the perceived social, moral, and economic consequences of the welfare state, and the evolution of perceived ethnic threat in Flanders and Wallonia. The data of the ISPO/PIOP general election studies, and the European Social Survey are used.