This article studies the political discourses regarding the future of Belgian federalism since the year 2000. Analysing party manifestos, it intends to identify patterns of preferences about the long-term evolution of Belgian institutions and the distribution of competences. The quantitative and qualitative analysis shows that the systemic duality of Belgian federalism largely explains the preferences of political actors: French-speaking parties overall oppose the broad state reform that the Dutch-speaking parties collectively support. Yet, each party has a specific position on the decentralization cleavage and a vision of Belgian federalism that cannot be reduced to its linguistic affiliation.
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