Tunisia is the only Arab Spring country which has succeeded so far in its democratic transition. Now that all the democratic institutions have been put in place, and after the legislative and presidential elections of 2014, the chances of democratic consolidation remain to be seen. Yet the regime faces serious challenges that cast doubt on its survival capacity. The political dynamics at play after the 2014 elections, which allowed Nidaa Tounes to come to power, cannot be understood without taking into account the conditions surrounding the political transition itself. The National Dialogue, hosted by the Quartet who were recently awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, is key to understanding the ongoing process of democracy consolidation. Taking into account both contingent and structural factors, this paper analyses how the current context is likely to shape the choices of the presidency of the Republic and of the Essid government, as well as the implications in terms of their legitimacy.
Paper produced within the framework of the New-Med Research Network, October 2015. See also The National Dialogue, Collusive Transactions and Government Legitimacy in Tunisia, in The International Spectator, Vol. 51, No. 1 (March 2016), p. 99-112.
1. Political dynamics
1.1 The game of political alliances
1.2 Start of a de-legitimacy?
2. Recession, economic policy and the threat of social crisis
3. Terrorism and insecurity: incompetence and authoritarian temptation