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  • Created by: joe
  • Created on: 30-03-13 17:24

What is a referendum?

  • Single issue vote (usually)
  • AKA plebiscite or ballot questions
  • Might be held at same time as general election or local elections 
  • held on issues which are considered to be of particular significance  the people or the long term future of the country
  • return to 'direct democracy'
  • not legally binding
  • usually yes or no
  • local referendums have been held in England, Wales and Scotland since 1913.

Examples in the UK 

Before 1997 only four had been held. E.g.:

  • NI Sovereignty Referendum, 1973 - 2 questions: should NI remain part of the UK? YES. Should NI join EIRE?  NO
  • European Community Membership Referendum, 1975: should UK remain a member of the EEC? YES

Since 1997, Tony Blair keen to restore electorates participation in politics:

  • Scottish devolution, 1997
  • Welsh Devolution, 1997
  • Greater London Authority referendum, 1998
  • NI Belfast Agreement, 1998
  • North east England devolution, 2004
  • Welsh devolution, 2011
  • UK AV, 2011

Why do governments call referenda?

  • Settle questions…


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