Widely renowned typologies in Comparative Political Economy like the 'Varieties of Capitalism' or the 'Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism' are criticized to neglect political conflict, because they selectively focus on institutional characteristics, most notably labor relations and welfare regimes. In doing so, they fall short to grasp the whole meaning of their categories. This analysis moves beyond institutionally defined political-economic arrangements and studies the role of public debates for different capitalist models. Using novel relational data from an extensive content analysis of newspapers from 2004 to 2006, political conflicts on economic liberalization in Britain, France and
Germany are explored. More specifically, the structure of conflicts and the influence of various political actors for the debate on economic liberalization are precisely assessed. The results reveal persistent national peculiarities with respect to political contention which can plausibly be ascribed to the influence of long-term historical legacies and institutional complementariness as outlined by capitalist typologies.