The Model of Executive Elections in the Local Context in the Reformation Era: The Modelof Village Head Election in the Local Context

Yacub Cikusin, M. Mas'ud Said, Sukardi, Ali Maskur Musa.

At the legal system domain, the democratic transition in Indonesia is characterized by a change in the local leader election system, from a non-direct election by the member of the representative body to direct election by people. The application of direct election system in local political leader recruitment is normatively aimed to (1) improve the accessibility of the recruiting process of a local political leader, (2) to bring in a more politics local political leader, and (3) to minimize the possibility the money politics in the election of local political leaders. The phenomenon of direct election for a local political leader during 2005-2006, however, shows the different fact. Money politics occurs everywhere. Defining politics as the struggle for power, this research is intended to (1) discover the signification of money politics in the winning process of local political leader candidates, (2) to describe the way of the money politics works in the winning process of the local political leader candidates, (3) to specify the functions of money politics in the winning process of local political leader candidates. Adistrict with high economic attractiveness was selected as the research site. A qualitative-descriptive analytical strategy was applied to analyze the gathered data in the form of formal document and published news, observational field notes, and the records of in-depth interviews with all main actors and the key informants of the election of a local political leader. The findings show a number of threats of money politics have been anticipated and have been tried to prevent systematically by establishing related regulations and administering the supervisory committee and independent monitoring institutions. It is evident that money is the most necessary means to win the very tight rivalry in local political leader election since it can be converted into or exchanged with the other necessary means. The absolute nature of money as a means in attaining the goal of local political leader candidates gives the opportunity for the political croupier to enter and intervene in the process local political leader election. In the context of the relationship between the actors of local political leader election, money serves as the most certain binding. Such binding will influence the public policy decision made by the elected political leader so that gives special advantages to the political croupier. The first implication of this research is on the transition to democracy. At the political behaviour domain, the democratic transition in Indonesia, as reflected in the direct local leader election, is characterized by the emergence of money-oriented pragmatism, so that: (1) directing the transition from people to money sovereignty oriented transition, (2) fertilizing pragmatic political behaviour both among the elite and the massive voters, (3) and lessening the influence of political ideology upon the peoples' electoral behaviour. The second implication is on the refinement of the dimension of power, from the dichotomous model to the continuum one. The change from potential to actual power is triggered by the dynamics of political life. There is exchange-based power which is located between the consensus-based and coercion-based power. In term of public morality, the practice of money politics will result in a less legitimated local leader, so that property-based power which is located between the occupation-based power and personality-based power. There is a type of sensible but unproven power which is located between the implicit and explicit power. There is a type of liaison power which is stronger than, and bridges the direct and non-direct power. The third implication is on the theory of the basis of power. The domination of the economic elite in local power structure affects the basis of power form cultural-based power to material-based power. This phenomenon lessens the popularity of political ideologies and fertilizing the pragmatism in the elite’s and mass’ political behaviour. The findings are, however, rejects Marx’s hypothesis of base determinism over the legal system, but they are still powerful in influencing the implementation of the legal system in line with their interests. Finally, the Parsons’ theory of voluntary action which was offered as a theoretical perspective is consequently insufficient to explain the phenomena of money politics in the local political leader election. Parsons’ theoretical model needs to be advanced by (1) adding the Marx’s theory of capital structuralism which affirms the significant meaning of capital in shaping societal behaviour, and (2) involving the Mead’s agency theory which affirms the notion of human beings as the creative agent in negotiating the social structure that is shaped by the social norms as well as the capital.

Volume 12 | Issue 6

Pages: 2608-2617

DOI: 10.5373/JARDCS/V12I6/S20201219