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Discuss the Case, Both for and Against Using Referendums in a Democracy Essay

  • Submitted by: zhengyong
  • on November 17, 2013
  • Category: Miscellaneous
  • Length: 1,026 words

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Below is an essay on "Discuss the Case, Both for and Against Using Referendums in a Democracy" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

“Government of the people; Government by the people; Government for the people.” It is the fundamental definition of democracy. Two of which refers to the participatory democracy and direct democracy from the people and referendum is the answer to the two. Referendum refers to a vote on a single important political or constitutional issue by the people. It allows stronger political participation as the effect of voting in referendums is raising awareness of the people in the issue in debate and letting their opinion be heard as well. On top of that, direct democracy is achieved as the people will have a direct say and influence on the critical issue and it can prevent unpopular decision from being made by the government.

Referendum provides the most direct form of political participation and since political participation is one of the fundamental pillars of democracy, referendum strengthens democracy in a nation. This grants the people sovereignty, commonly referred to as popular sovereignty. Although the outcome of a referendum is not binding on Parliament due to legal sovereignty in theory, more often than not, the government will respect the verdict of the people, thus making the referendum binding in a minimal sense in practice. However, the people’s sovereignty will unavoidably undermine parliamentary sovereignty as Parliament is supposed to hold the power to make laws or to overrule laws.   Another controversial ground on the issue with referendum is the question of how fair of a representation it actually is. For example, on issues with high importance such as the electoral reform referendum on whether the UK should adopt the Alternative Vote system in 2011 only had a 42.2% turnout; the referendum on whether the Welsh Assembly should be given wide law making powers in 2011 in Wales only had a mere 35.6% turnout. The democratic nature in referendum is under question here as the extremely low turnout undermines the integrity of the results and despite...

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MLA Citation

"Discuss the Case, Both for and Against Using Referendums in a Democracy". Anti Essays. 10 Dec. 2018

<http://snehaedu.com/free-essays/Discuss-The-Case-Both-For-And-546393.html>

APA Citation

Discuss the Case, Both for and Against Using Referendums in a Democracy. Anti Essays. Retrieved December 10, 2018, from the World Wide Web: http://snehaedu.com/free-essays/Discuss-The-Case-Both-For-And-546393.html