Scholarly article on topic 'Political Identity and Election in Indonesian Democracy: A Case Study in Karang Pandan Village – Malang, Indonesia'

Political Identity and Election in Indonesian Democracy: A Case Study in Karang Pandan Village – Malang, Indonesia Academic research paper on "Political Science"

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Procedia Environmental Sciences
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{Election / "Political party" / "Political identity" / Indonesia}

Abstract of research paper on Political Science, author of scientific article — A.B. Barrul Fuad

Abstract Political change in Indonesia which began since 1998 has given a way for an open politics. Using ethnography, this research reveals that although PDIP won parliamentary election in the presidential and district leader (bupati) elections, some of its supporters did not vote for the party's candidates. In the executive elections, their perception is different. Choosing a president or a bupati is not only perceived as a matter of political or economic calculations but also, and more likely, perceived as cultural events. Under such a circumstance, therefore, ethical values such as politeness of the candidate become the voter's main consideration to vote.

Academic research paper on topic "Political Identity and Election in Indonesian Democracy: A Case Study in Karang Pandan Village – Malang, Indonesia"

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Environmental Sciences



Procedía Environmental Sciences 20 (2014) 477 - 485

4th International Conference on Sustainable Future for Human Security, SustaiN 2013


Political change in Indonesia which began since 1998 has given a way for an open politics. Using ethnography, this research reveals that although PDIP won parliamentary election in the presidential and district leader (bupati) elections, some of its supporters did not vote for the party's candidates. In the executive elections, their perception is different. Choosing a pre sident or a bupati is not only perceived as a matter of political or economic calculations but also, and more likely, perceived as cultural events. Under such a circumstance, therefore, ethical values such as politeness of the candidate become the voter's ma in consideration to vote.

© 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (

Selectionandpeer-reviewunder responsibility of the SustaiN conference committee and supported by Kyoto University; (RISH), (OPIR), (GCOE-ARS)and (GSS)as co-hosts

Keywords: Election; Political party; Political identity; Indonesia

1. Introduction

The political history of Indonesia can be divided into four periods that is liberal or constitutional democracy (1949-1958), guided democracy (1959-1965), Pancasila (New Order 1966- May 2, 1998) and Reformation (post-reign of Soeharto, May 1998 - now). The first free general election in Indonesia was held in 1955, ten years after Indonesia gained its independence, In the event, 52 political parties were participated and there were four big parties that won the election: Partai National Indonesia (PNI, Indonesian Nationalist Party), 22.3%, Majelis Syuro

* Corresponding author Tel. + 81-90-6601-6543. E-mail address:

1878-0296 © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (

Selection and peer-review under responsibility of the SustaiN conference committee and supported by Kyoto University; (RISH), (OPIR),

(GCOE-ARS) and (GSS) as co-hosts


Indonesia (Masyumi, Modernist Islam Party), 20.9%, Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), 18.4% and Partai Komunis Indonesia (PKI, Indonesian Communist Party), 16.4% [1]. The four winning political parties may represent the political culture, where PNI and PKI representing secular parties, while the rest, Masyumi and NU were the political culture of Islam. It is important to note that during the Liberal Democracy era, political party possessed a very strong role in the kingdom.

In 1958, Soekarno introduced guided Democracy. The number of the political parties was reduced into merely into 10 political parties: PNI, PKI, PERT (Pergerakan Tarbiyah Islamiah, Islamic Education Movement), PSII (Partai Syarikat Islam Indonesia (Islam Party of Indonesia), Murba (Proletarian Party), Parkindo (Partai Kristen Indonesian, Indonesian Christian Party), Partindo (Partai Indonesia, Party of Indonesia) and IPKI (Ikatan Pendukung Kemerdekaan Indonesia, Association of Supporters of Indonesia's Independence). The ten parties roughly may represent two groups: secular and Islam nationalists, or Pancasila and Islam Parties. The grouping was made since at that time there were two aspirations: those that wished to separate religions from nation, and those that wanted to establish an Islamic law-based nation. And Masyumi, the second winning party in the 1955 general election was dimissed since it was involved in an effort to carry out a coup d'etat of the Soekarno's resign.

In 1971, the New Order held a general election where there were ten political parties participating in it, including Golkar (Golongan Karya, Functionaries Party). Golkar as the Government party won the election with the percentage of 62.8% or 236 chairs out of 360 in the parliament, a significantly high number to control the legislative [1]. What about the PNI? This party, though second winning party in the 1955 general election, only gained 6.9% voters.

In its policies, the New Order gave priority on the economic development and to realize the aim, political stability should be established first. One of efforts to have such a political stability is to organize them by merging the ten parties into three: Golongan Karya, Partai Persatuan Pembangunan (PPP, United Development Party), and Partai Democracy Indonesia (PDI, Indonesian Democratic Party). The PPP is the results of the merging of NU, Parmusi, Perti and PSII, the PDI from PNI, Parkindo, Partai Katolik, Murba, and IPKI. Therefore, in the next general elections, 1977, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1992 there were three parties participating in them. It was Golkar that won each general election with 60% voters, even in the 1997 general election, the last period of the New Order power, Golkar gained 74,51 %, while PPP 22,43 % and PDI 3,06 % voters.

On May 21, 1998, two months after the cabinet of the results of the 1997 general election were formed; President Soeharto handed over his mandate to the vice-president Dr. B.J. Habibie due to various demonstrations and violence in various cities in Indonesia. Habibie, because of political forces, made political liberalization. Habibie's administration soon prepared the implementation of general election. It only needed one year to make the General Election realized. It was the first general election after the New Order fell down and the second independent and democratic general election after 1995. At least there were 145 political parties which enrolled, but it was only 48 parties that were administratively permitted to join in the general election. Four parties won the 1999: Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan (PDIP) 33.7 %, Golkar 22.4 %, Partai Kebangkitan Bangsa (PKB) 12.6 %, and PPP 10.7 % [1].

At that time, the president was elected by the Majelis Permusyawaratan Rakyat (People's Consultative Assembly) and Abdurrahman Wahid (from PKB) as the President, and Megawati Sokearnoputri (PDI) as the vice-president. But President Abdurrahman Wahid was moved from the position by the an Extraordinary Meeting of the MPR and it was Megawati Soekarno putri and Hamzah Haz (PPP) whore were appointed as the President, and vice-president, respectively. In 2004, the second general election after Soeharto handed over his mandate to Habibie, was made not only to elect the parliament members (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat, House of Representative) and Local (either provincial or local) parliament members, but also the DPD (Dewan Perwakilan Daerah, House of Local Representative) members, and also the President directly. Twenty four political parties joined in the election. There were four parties that won the election namely Partai Golkar 21.6 %, PDIP 18.5 %, PKB 10.6 %, and PPP 8.2 %. Interestingly, PDI voters dropped significantly to 15.2% although Megawati was in her position as the president. There was an amazing new comer, that is, Democratic Party (PD, Partai Demokrat) that nominated Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as the candidate of President. The PD occupied the fifth order after PPP with the voters of 7.5%.

Then in the direct president election, there were five pairs of candidate namely Wiranto-Solahudin Wahid nominated by Golkar, Megawati Soekarno putri-Hasyim Muzadi^ by PDIP, Amien Rais - Siswono Yudo Husodo by Partai Amanat Nasional (PAN), Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono - Jussuf Kalla by PD, and Hamzah Haz - Agum Gumelar by the PPP. No pairs of candidate that gained 50% voters, therefore the second cycle with two pairs of candidates with the first and second number of voters, was madeA The two pairs were Megawati - Hasyim Muzadi (26.61 %) and Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono - Jussuf Kalla (33.57 %). In the second cycle the pair SBY-Jussuf Kalla was elected by 61.2%, whereas Megawati - Hasyim Muzadi 38.8 %. Therefore, SBY - Kalla was elected as the president [2].

Then in the 2009 general election, the voters of the PD increased three times namely 20.85%, from the 2004 general election, exceeding the voters of two big parties, Golkar and PDIP which merely gained 20.85% and 14.03%, respectively. PKS occupied the fourth rank§ with the voters of 7.88 % [3]. Concerning with the candicates of president, there were 3 pairs namely Megawati - Prabowo proposed by PDIP dan Partai Gerakan Indonesia Raya (GERINDRA), SBY - Boedionon by PD, and Jussuf Kalla - Wiranto by Golkar dan Partai Hati Nurani Rakya (Hanura)^. Unlike in the 2004 president election with two cycles, this election occurred in one cycle since the pair SBY-Boediono gained more than 50%, namely 60.80 %, meanwhile the pair of Megawati - Prabowo, 26.79 % and Jussuf Kalla§§ - Wiranto 12.41 %. SBY was elected for the second time as the President of the Republic of Indonesia for the period of 2009 - 2014 [3].

The voters at local levels were inseparable from big parties although their rankings were different. It was also the case in Malang regency where in three general elections in this reformation era (1999, 2004, and 2009). It was PDIP under the Megawati Soekarno putri administration which won the elections. This shows that Malang regency is a strong base of this party. However, in the presidential election, it was SBY that gained the highest votes.

2. Research Problem

In Karang Pandan, Pakisaji sub-district, Malang regency (where this case study was conducted), it is shown that although in legislative general election PDIP always won the voters, but Megawati lost in the two president elections. From the descriptions above, this paper tries to answer the following question: "Although PDIP always won in the legislative elections, in Malang regency, but why did Megawati always lose in the presidential elections?"

3. The Framework of Explanation

Participation in a general election is one of forms of political participations and is the most elementary participation in democracy. Political participation is a voluntarily act; an ordinary citizen usually does in order influence any public decisions [4]. Participation is an act, instead of desire, intention, interest or willingness. If the action is made by a public official, not an ordinary person, then the action is not included into political participation. If the action is not made voluntarily, but coercively or it is made because he is paid, it is also not public participation. Also if the action is not intended to influence public decisions, it is also not regarded as political participation. Therefore, there are four main elements in the political participation: action, second, ordinary people, voluntarily, and influencing public policy [5].

^ Head of the main board of Nahdhatul Ulama (NU), the biggest religion (Islam) organization in Indonesia. He lives in Pondok Pesantren Al Hikam, Malang. Before, he was the head of NU at the province of East Java.

^ Read more in Aris Ananta, Evi Nurvidya Arifin, Leo Suryadinata; Emerging Democracy in Indonesia, ISEAS, 2005, Singapore. § The choice in 1999 was Partai Keadilan (PK) (Justice Party). Since this party could not fulfill the threshold, it was changed into Partai Keadilan Sejahtera (PKS) or Welfare Justice Party and in the 2004 general election, the voters were 7.3%, occupying the sixth order. It is a moderate Islam party and the management is done by young figures.

Ex commander of special land force, the chair of founding council of Partai Gerakan Indonesia Raya (Gerindra), the first time in joining and it occupied the eight ranks with the voters of 4.4%

^ He was the Governor of the Bank of Indonesia, is a professor in the Economic Faculty, Gajahmada University.

M This party was found by Wiranto, ex commander of Indonesian Army in the Soeharto era, and it joined in the first time in the 2009 general election with the voters of 3.77%.

§§ The incumbent vice president and the general chairman of Golkar Party. District or area under the provincial level.

Participation in general election and president election by electing a party or a candidate is one form of political participation. However, it is not the only form of the participation, there are still many other form of participation for examples helping activities of a political party, donating fund for a political party, coming in a campaign, joining a parade and the like, even boycotting a public policy, for instance a strike, categorized into political participation. In this paper, attention is paid into problems in political participations in the form of participation in president or general election.

In general, in the study of behavior in electing in a general election, there are three models of explanation. First is a sociological model. This model developed in 1950 in America and Europe. It is assumed that the behavior in electing is determined by sociological characteristics of voters, especial social classes, religions, and ethnic groups/locality/languages. This model is popularly called SES (socio economic status) [4], which is then completed by Conway as a Civic Voluntary Model [5]. Principally, the two models assumes that someone who is participating in a general election since he is really aware of the meaning of general election for his interest and the community as a whole. The results of the election will determine and influence policies influencing many people, including him. Someone with such awareness is usually educated. Therefore, he has a more tendency to join in a general election than those with low level of education.

Besides education, occupation status is also assumed to influence one's participation in a general election. Working people are more probable to participate in general election than those who are looking for jobs, since an unemployed focuses his attention to looking for a job, and he is possibly absent in any political activities, such as general election. Moreover, types of jobs are also believed to be able to influence one's participation in general election. Those with more susceptibility to government policies tend to join in general election.

Dealing with logic in participation, which parties or whom are candidates elected, and why? The supporters of this sociological model believes that a voter elect a party or candidate of a certain public official since there is sameness between sociological characteristics of voters and those of parties or candidates.

Second, it is a psychological model. This model introduces something called democratic culture or civic culture, specifically the culture of political participation to explain political participation [6]. According to this model, a citizen participates in general election or in president election is not only because his socio-economic condition is better, or because he is in a social web, but he is interested in the politic, has a close feeling to a political party (party identity), has enough information to elect, feels that his votes is meaningful, and is believed that his choice will improve the condition.

Someone participates in a political affair such as taking a part in a general election not only he is in a social web, and is involved in any civic activities, but he also wants to participate. Although he is engaged in a civic life, he does not automatically take part in general election if he does not want to participate in it. Political engagement includes political information or knowledge, political interest, internal efficacy, and partisanship (party identity). Political information or knowledge is information one possesses on anything dealing with politic of political interest. One with more information on public problems tends to be more capable of determining his attitude and making political actions, such as participating in general election. Political efficacy is one's feeling that he is able to understand and determine any condition dealing with public interest. This attitude makes him participate in general election.

Another element in political engagement is partisanship or political identity. Partisanship is a psychological condition, any feeling of closeness, attitude to support or to be loyal to or self-identity to a certain political party. A partisan is someone who feels that he is part of a party or identifies himself with a certain political party, for example, Golkar or PDIP. Therefore, party identity is believed to be important in determining why a citizen takes part in general election or president election. This factor is really inseparable from socialization process. In this psychological factor, partisan's perception or attitude is built because a process of political socialization he experiences. Political party, like religion or social class, is an independent entity that will form one's sentiment or political identity socialized into the political party. It is this party identity (party ID) that mediate sociological factors and opinion and attitude towards a political party, candidates of public officials, concerned political issues and decision to elect a party or a certain candidate of public official [7]. Political socialization in the family, work place, and community help the process of party identity.

Psychological model of this voter's attitude includes what is called self-identity to political party or party identity (party ID), opinion on any issues or concerned public policies, opinion on personalities of party figures or candidates who compete in president election.

Third, it is rational or political-economy model. If in the psychological model the party identity is relatively stable, so that this model can be used to explain stability and continuity of political attitude. But, this politics in fact is dynamic, including in Indonesia. In three general elections (1999, 2004, and 2009) after the Soeharto's resign, there were three parties that won the election namely PDIP, Golkar and PD. Why? Maybe the people have got better information on general election, and it turns out that participation in general election would not make their fate better. Therefore, they tend not to elect, and this is why the level of participation in general election and president election is lower.

In the perspective of rational choice, the result of election is a public good, meaning that anyone who becomes the leader or any public policy to make should not be negotiable although his contribution to the public good is high (Olson,1967). Whether someone takes part in a general election or not, it will not influence him. Rationally, it is not useful to take part in a general election since the result of the general election will not influence him. In this perspective, it is assumed that one will calculate rationally on how to get maximum results with minimum efforts. The people will also evaluate either personal or collective economic condition. According to Anthony Down [8] one's positive evaluation on economic condition will give some rewards to someone who occupies a position. On the other hand, if the evaluation is negative, it will give punishment to the official by changing his choice to the opposition. Briefly, this rational model states that one will elect a candidate or a party if the candidate or the party is viewed to be able to help the voter meet his basic need namely economic life.

Miller and Shanks states that the three models should not be contradictory, but they may influence on political choice. Sociological factors in the sociological model are the most basic component. Above it, party identity may grow well, and above it, there built "predisposition of the concerned policies" [9]. On the party identity, preferences to present policies are shaped. Then perception on the present condition flourishes, and finally an evaluation will determine political choice. Therefore, in this paper, the three models will be used as a frame of analysis to explain the phenomena and data found in the field. And then by using ethnography, this research was held in Karang Pandan Village, sub district Pakisaji, Malang Regency.

4. General Election and Harmony in Karang Pandan Village

As a part of the area of Malang regency, East Java Province, Indonesia, the type of culture of the people of Karang Pandan village will not be separated from the influence of Java subculture. Although the majority of the village members are Moslem (3,851 person/September 2011), the pattern of their practice of the religion cannot be separated from elements of Hindu and Buddha cultures. It is because historically Malang is one of areal bases of the religions. More historical evidences reinforce the assumption of the influence of the religions.

As the majority members, Moslems in this area possess 4 mosques and 17 musholla as a place for praying. Then Hindu as the second majority (1,038 persons in September 2011) has 1 temple. And there are 2 churches.

Although Hindu is the second majority religion, the influence of this religion is significant, especially in village rituals such as bersih desa. In the ceremony, symbolic forms from Hindu and Islam become united in local values and manifested into common attitudes which are socially legitimate. In this ceremony, citizens with different religions cooperate one another in order to succeed in the bersih desa ceremony which is held annually.

The activities or events can be a medium to unite people. The activity of a mort group, for example, not only manage a citizen who has passed away, but also as a medium for helping one another, especially intended to reduce any burden concerning with the mort.

Moreover, a portrait of strong tolerance spirit among members may be seen from another side of their life. There is a habit to help one another when one of the members is building a house, for example. Usually his neighbors will give some contribution either in the form of materials or labor. This habit is intended to accelerate the building of the house.

In a larger scale, although community is grouped on the basis of belief and jobs (the existence of farmers), their spirit of gotong royong (mutual cooperation) still exists in their daily life when there is a village development, for instance. One of the real examples is the willingness of the people to participate in the development by attending in the Deliberation of Village Development Plan. In this meeting the people can express their opinions and thoughts concerning with the plan for the next year.

A harmonious relationship among village members or among villagers and the village officials in the context of village development is a portrait of daily life of the people in Karang Pandan. Even, this mutual cooperation does not stop in this kind of activity, but it also lasts at the stage of the project implementation.

The people are voluntarily neck-and-neck to help the process of the development program. People give various kinds of contribution; for example, in the forms of labor, materials or food and beverage. These show that they care about their togetherness, leading to the results of development they can share later. This attitude may give impacts on the smoothness of development process in Karang Pandan so that the results of the development may be enjoyed together.

Table 1. The number of people of Karang Pandan village based on their religions._

Village Religions Years

' 2000 2001 2006 2007 2008 2009 Islam 3.885 3.911 4.206 4.200 4.205 4.205 Catholic 68 69 74 75 75 75 Karang Pandan Christian 89 89 96 97 97 97 Hindhu 735 739 795 800 800 800 _Buddha_0_0_0 0_0_0

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics of Malang regency, years 2000 to 2009 (modified)

Karang Pandan village is located in the area of Pakisaji sub-district, which is geographically between Malang city and Kepanjen city as capital city of Malang regency. This village is dwelled by not less than 5,177 persons of which 2,542 are males and the rest, 2,635 are females with the area of 2.31 km2 with the density of 2,238 persons/ km2. It is analogous to a text of multiculturalism since there are various groups of religions with their places for worshipping shown by worshippers of Islam with their Mosques and Mushola, those of Christian and Catholic with their churches and those of Hindu with their temples, including Trimurti school, who can live harmoniously. The condition is presented in the tables below.

Table 2. The number of places for worshipping in Karang Pandan village.

Village Types Year

2000 2001 2003 2006 2007 2008 2009

Mosque 3 2 4 4 4 4 4

Langgar 13 17 15 15 15 17 17

Karang Musholla 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Pandan Ponpes 0 1 2 2 2 - 2

Church 2 2 2 2 2 2 2

Temple 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

Vihara 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics of Malang regency, years 2000 to 2009 (modified)

The heterogeinity is not only at the level of religion, but also that of types of jobs. For instance, farmers in this village possess 264.40 hectares, for wet rice fields and dry field of 157.10 hectares and 207.30 hectares, respectively. On the fields, they cultivate various kinds of agricultural commodities, including paddy, corn, vegetable and fruits. They still exist amidst the existence of traders of modern markets and white collars.

Moreover, in the process of strengthening religious identity among the people, although quantitatively, this is not strong enough to merely reduce local identity which is still "abangan"; for examples, around the mosque, cock fighting may still happen, "togeF (illegal gambling) is done beside religion teachers' houses, young men enjoy alcoholic drink at the corner of the village street, even ecstasy pills are consumed collectively in the yard belonging to the elementary school teachers, pairs of lovers are talking freely and so forth.

Like the area of "abangan," a term Clifford Geertz coined; the political affiliation of the people of Karangpandan village has for years dealt with labeled "political party" with high ideology Nationalist-Soekarnoists, namely PDI-P head by Megawati Soekarno putri as the fifth persons occupying the chair of RI 1 after his father, then Soeharto and Habibie, then Gus Dur. The term abangan coined by the antrhopologist in his monumental work with the title of The Religion of Java is actually intended to express one of the forms of a religious orientation in Mojokuto (a rural area). The group of people actually believes in God, but their daily behaviors are still identical with anything called "breaking their own syariat;" for instance, Mo Limo, as Prabu Jayabaya said. They are different from Priyayi living in downtown and Santri in the trading area. Religion, for Geertz, is as cultural values, where he sees that the cultural values are at a group of meaning. It is in the group of meaning that each individual interprets his experiences and determines their behaviors, so that with the values, the doer may define the world and the guide he uses. When dividing the Javanesse culture into three different types, Geertz saw that Javanese religion as a

balanced integration between the tradition with animism elements and Hindhu and Islam religions which come later; then they develop into sincretism.

Geertz applies the term abangan in the culture of villagers: farmers with less influence from external parties compared with other groups among the population. The term santri is applied to the culture of moslems obeying the regulation strictly, and they usually live in urban areas near mosques and consist of traders. The term priyayi is applied to the highest class of cultures that generally consists of either high or low noblemen/women.

When studying Islam in Indonesia especially in Java, Geertz at last found two striking differences between santri and abangan. He says that abangan group do not care for doctrine of religion and tend to dissolve themselves into details of rituals. Meanwhile the santri group make the doctrine as their main guide for their life and give no tolerant attitude to cremonial practices. Observance pf religious duties (peribadatan) for santri is a simple matter, the most important thing is the Islam doctrine, especially moral and social interpretation.

In line with the work, a magnificient attribute of the political party with the logo of wild ox with white snout is also "abang" (red). Though it is merely a symbol, their character and behavior up to now are also identical with what Geertz has mentioned. This "abangan" political party has a strong domination that for some periods the building of the Parliament of Malang regency is full of red members, even the regent and government apparatus are always from the cadres of this political party. It is not easy for anyone with "green" background (Islamic parties) to be able to get symphaty from the people although the new comers of course do not merely present vision, missions and excellent work programs but also bring with them a kind of angpao (gifts) in the forms of road improvement, basic needs (rice, sugar, fried oil etc), free medical treatment, development of kampong gateways, mushola, and the like. Their domination can be seen from the result of the general ellection in the village where PDIP still won the election from period to period as shown in the following tables:

Table 3. Data on the winners of election from 1999 to 2004.

First Winner Second Winner Third Winner

Village 1999 2004 2009 1999 2004 2009 1999 2004 2009


Source: Central Bureau of Statistics of Malang regency, years 2000 to 2009 (modified)

5. The So-Called 'Abangan' Mass and Its Political Implication

The above mentioned groups are so firm that their decision may give a political consequence. It is clear that anyone who wants to become the candidate of village head, parliament member, regent, governor, even the president should be able to urge the "abangan" group to elect him. He should be permissive for their habits. The permissiveness should be accompanied by real actions in the field. In other words, a candidate of regent should not hate cock fight, togel, drunkers, even he should be willing to give contribution for buying banyu bodho (alcoholic drink) when there is a group of youths who have a party accompanied by drinking alcoholic drink and hard music. It is a reality that a bottle of alcoholic drink, t-shirt and also basic needs (rice, sugar, frying oil) are exchanged with votes. A pragmatic society that is matched with transactionalist politicians results in the terms of politic dagang sapi (take and give). If at the elite level, a candidate of regent should have some blessing from those at the national level and groups of rich supporters in the area, at the grassroot level, he should have blessings from the majority group, namely "abangan" group. If this is so, he will be able to win the election.

The "abangan" mass have their own taste and lifestyle, also the rule of the game, like political regulations which are hard to compromise. Unlike cadres from other political parties susceptible to internal conflicts, loyalists to PDIP have been proved to be really faithful to their party. Although they are often attacked by a number of cadres from other parties due to giving gifts such as rice, clothings and money, their loyality is relatively firm. They are willing to receive some money from cadres of other parties, but they will elect them.

6. Their Party Should be PDIP, but Their President Should be SBYm

^ SBY stands for Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, the current President of Indonesia.

It is mentioned above that political affiliation to "abangan" political party is hard to change into "green" (religion) party for various reasons such as the taste, lifestyle and the rules of the game. Therefore, suppose that ones move to other parties, they will still look for the one with red platform (government parties) as long as their ideology is still nationalist though with religious symbol, instead of a party with Islamic ideology, such as PKS. Although the "abangan" mass are really loyal to the party with the logo of the white snout, PDIP, there is an illogical thing happening. It happened during the presidential election. They turned out to be very loyal to SBY who comes from a political party with Nationalist-Religious ideology. He is an eternal rival of Megawati since the 1999 general election.

Table 4. Recapitulation of the general election vote count president and vice president of each polling station in the village Karang Pandan village

Pakisaji Malang District 2009._

No Candidate Votes Vote Count Total

1 President and Vice President 2 Block I 3 Block II 4 Block III 5 Block IV 6 Block V 7 Block VI 8 9

1 Hj. Megawati Soekarno putri and H. Prabowo Subianto 203 111 168 180 204 204 1.070

2 H. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Boediono 249 250 261 268 267 322 1.617

3 H. M. Jusuf Kalla and H. Wiranto 20 41 17 21 26 24 149

The total number of valid votes of the candidate president and vice president 472 402 446 469 497 550 2.836

B The whole number of invalid votes 40 25 74 26 36 49 250

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics of Malang District, Years 1999 to 2009

The people at grassroot level have their own logic in terms of their political rationality; it is also the case of Karangpandan village. The PDIP sympathizers, since the founding of this republic, have consecrated themselves as the Soekarnoist (from Marhaenism at that time) and have not felt any real benefits from the reign of Megawati. They really felt the situation and real changes SBY made when he led this country. Political observers might say that Mega was not able to make use of his power to maintain "status quo," but the people had different evaluation. Grassroot mass is a group of people constantly becoming an object from the policy of the political power. Therefore, it is natural if they respond to any nice touches upon them by positive attitudes although the response is not massive. In the eye of the people of Karangpandan village, SBY more understands what they want and need than Megawati, who is their political leader. Dealing with legislative election, they are still loyal to PDIP. PDIP for them is a political identity, with no relationship with any person or political figure being involved in it. Therefore, in the president, governor, and regent elections where figures are prominent, legislative election and the president, governor or regent elections are not linear.

On the other hand, according to some actors of history in the village where Topeng Malangan was born, the journey of agriculture at the local level had its golden era when Soekarno became the president. There was never any trouble in terms of fertilizers and superior seeds, and the condition was also supported by stable price even during the harvest time. Whereas, such condition could not be found during the era of the next presidents where farmers should compete one another to buy expensive fertilizers although the price of their products was low during harvest time. This condition may make the political position of the Soekarno-based political party stronger in this village. However, at the stages of the next history and development, it turned out that Megawati, the head of the national leadership from the direct offspring from Soekarno, is assumed to not be able to continue the ideals of the father where he was very nationalist and was closed to wong cilik (grassroot). Megawati for them is merely the daughter of Pak Karno, instead of reincarnation of him who was visionary, patriotist, charismatic and firm.

7. Conclusion

The voters' behaviors reflect their own logic. Socio-culturally, the people of Karangpandan village are shaped within Javanese cultures or traditions giving emphasis on harmony in their social life. The values of harmony are expressed in the social life of the people in Karangpandang village. Heterogenity of religions is accompanied with the religiosity and religion-based activities, and the varied economic condition of the people does not hinder them to live together and to help one another. Even they have an art kampong "topeng malangan".

Dealing with the political life, the people of Karangpandan also really respect to differences of parties and their political choices. It is proved from the fact that there is no dispute or conflict among supporters from different political parties. The domination of "abangan" culture proves that in this village PDIP always gains the most voters in legislative election. Even, PDIP is their political identity. However, the victory in legislative election does not always guarantee that the figure the PDIP proposes may win the election. It can be proved from the previous two presidential elections where Megawati lost against her rival, SBY. It happened because for the voters in Karangpandan, SBY who is from PD, was seen to have more capability and more cultural acceptability than Megawati. In fact, SBY is from Java ethnic group and has a military background. He is not only capable but polite in his speech. Morevover, he never attacked his rival and always kept their emotion calm. It is in line with some values of the people of the village who always keep ethical values. Therefore, his presence as the candidate of the president of the Republic of Indonesia interested them, and he became a serious rival for Megawati when her characteristics at that time were not in line with the cultural values of Javanese people.


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