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Representative democracy is
limited and indirect. It is where the
citizens choose some one to make Definition of
political decisions on their behalf. It Democracy: Means
is limited in that voting takes place `Rule by the
at certain intervals. It is also people' or demos
indirect in that the citizens do not
krates meaning
directly take part in decision
making but appoint a `people power'.
representative based on their party
manifesto and so grants them the
legitimacy and authority to govern.
Democracy
Abraham
Lincoln's
Direct Democracy is definition of
based upon the concept Democracy: `the
that the citizens government of
themselves make the people, by
political decisions. Direct the people and
democracy come from for the people'.
Ancient Athens were Highlights the
citizens exercised Two forms of democracy importance of
political power. Modern are; direct and indirect. the three core
Manifestation is through features of
referendums. democracy.…read more

Slide 3

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The UK is viewed as undemocratic in that;
·Mps are bound by Whips and so must agree with party policies.
·The First-Past- The-Post electoral system produces unfair outcomes and
a `waste' of votes.
·There has been a reduction in voter turnout possibly to do with the fact The UK is in some
that most party ideologies are similar. For e.g. In the 2010 election voter
turnout was 65%. ways described as
·Civil Liberties have been eroded with the introduction of the terrorism
acts.
Liberal Democracy
·The Human Rights Act is not entrenched as the UK does not have a where there are free
codified system so parliament is able to remove rights,
·There has been more interest in pressure groups and less interest in and fair elections,
party politics and so a lead to the rise of partisan dealignment. free media and press
·Less representation of ethnic minorities and women in parliament.
and the freedom if
speech.
The UK is viewed as
democratic as;
·There are free and fair
elections were anyone 18 Democracy in the UK
and over is able to vote.
·A variety of parties to
choose from.
·The rule of law must be
applied by everyone
including the Monarch.
·Civil Liberties are
protected by the Human
Rights Act.
Representatives are elected on behalf of
·Freedom of speech and the electorate they are members of the
assembly. House of Commons.
·Free Media and Press.…read more

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Make the government more accountable by
introducing fixed-term parliament so that the
electorate can vote out an undesirable
government before the government sets the date Codified Constitution so
of the election to their liking. that all rights of citizens
are entrenched in a
legal document to stop
Consult the public any arbitrary action
more on decisions from ministers.
by delivering
more Enhancing democracy
referendums, so
that the Change of electoral system
electorate are so that votes are
educated and also proportional to seats and so
take part in are not `wasted'. Increases
politics in some Increase voter voter turnout. ( however it
way. More turnout by can be argued whether
democratic as it is making elections there ever will be any
a form of direct compulsory, E- reform because of the low
democracy. voting, lowering turnout in the AV
the age of vote to referendum and the loss of
16. trust in politics).…read more

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Provides a check on the
government, as the have less
control over the outcome. A vote on a specific issue
referendums extend
government power as they requiring a `yes or no'
decide whether and when to answer. A modern
hold referendums. manifestation of direct
democracy.
Referendums
Give the general
Governments are made
public direct and
more responsible as unmediated control
referendums force them to over decision-
listen to the public. However
making, ensuring
the governments job is to
govern and so they will not that their views are
be fulfilling their roles as expressed.
representatives. Wider political participation
creates a better informed
However the
and educated electorate. general public is ill
However it may not increase informed, poorly
education as referendums
are media influenced. And
educated and have
there is pressure from little interest in
political elites. politics.…read more

Slide 6

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Questions are raised on the impact of
There has been a
government and its duties as there are
declining turnout in
low levels of turnout and less interest in
elections. For example
politics leading to a less democratic state.
in the 2010 west
minister elections voter
This means that politicians turnout was 65% not a
do not gain the legitimacy huge increase from
needed in order to have 2005 when it was 61%.
the authority to represent Why has political
their electorate. participation declined
in recent years? (10
There has been a marks)
decrease in party
membership and an
increase in pressure Low turnout could be due to the loss of political
groups. People are trust especially after the 2009 MPs scandal.
inclined to join Also party policies have become to alike and so
pressure groups such voting any government will be the same.
as Amnesty
International rather
than political parties.…read more

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Comments

Old Sir

These Powerpoint slides provide a useful survey of the main issues surrounding democracy in the UK and some useful tips about revision. When using this students should also look specifically at issues in the arguments about the degrees to which the Westminster parliament is democratic, by comparison with assemblies / parliaments in Scotland, Wales and the EU. It is also important to consider the roles and impacts of the media and pressure groups in UK democracy.

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