Can presidential political systems jeopardize democracy?

May 6th, 2015
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An essay, exploring whether presidential power is good for democracy and if it can somehow threaten it.

Word Count: 3262
Showing Page: 1/8
Democratically unstable countries have been a topical subject of discussion in the scholarly literature during the past 40 years after Huntingtons third wave of democratization began in Portugal. The domino effect then quickly echoed in Spain and in Greece, conveying an unclear future in a new democratic social order for these countries. But what role does the system of government play in establishing and maintaining democracy? Do presidential systems indeed imperil democracy? Or is it better to have parliamentary system, where public opinion is better represented? In this essay, I will argue that indeed presidential systems jeopardize democracy, because Presidential opinion and cognition can be leading in policy; concentrated political power can reform whole institutional frameworks; people with any kind of ideas can very quickly occupy the presidential seat; political culture might make it only possible for leaders to govern in a certain way; and finally, leaders might be too much dependent on international help to stay in power. I am going to illustrate this thesis with examples from Venezuela and Georgia as most relevant examples.Presidential systems do imperil democratisation, because presidential cognition mixed with concentrated political power result in modeling democracy, according to the Presidents own opinion or interests. This way, heads of state gain the means of imperiling civil liberties, and directing policy in a certain direction. That direction m

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