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Choosing Electoral Systems Through The Lens Of The Main Yardsticks: Representation And Stability (Sustainability)

1056 words - 5 pages

Electoral systems are one of the primary and fundamental institutions of political systems. Many of the existing types of electoral systems can seriously render an influence on every field of state policy beginning with wealth care and finishing with defence systems. In this case, choosing between the types of electoral systems is substantial through the lens of two key yardsticks: representation of all peoples’ demands as well as stability and sustainability of polity.
Due to there being the many types of electoral systems, this essay will solely consider two main types, namely, a single member majoritarian system (SMMS or the majoritarian system, where voters have to choose just one ...view middle of the document...

A typical example of this is the British Liberal Democrats, who obtained an important share of the votes in 1983, but gained few seats on account of their thinly spread geographical support (Norris 1997, p. 6). Thus, in the PR system, minor groups (ethnic, religious etc.), so-called social cleavages, and women have more opportunity to be in power (Norris 1997, p. 7), albeit it mitigates these effects by failing in setting a direct connection between representatives and constituencies (Irvine, 1979 and Bogdanor, 1985 cited in Blias 1991, p. 255).
The diverse models of representation, in terms of the types of electoral systems, might affect the stability and sustainability of polity, which in turn, consist of the strength of government and the security of nation. Research by Blias suggests that strong government is more possible in the majoritarian system, where the government can enact the policies with a free hand (Blias, 1991 cited in O’Neal 1993, p. 13), whereas, there is confrontation between parties in forming a government in the proportional system. The troubles in shaping a new coalition government in Canada in May of 1917 may be taken as an illustration of the weaknesses of PR. Concerns are also expressed about the policy of the government, forming as a result of casting the votes, which might not be undertaken effortlessly in a coalition owing to having mutual veto mechanisms (Lijphart, 1977 cited in Andeweg 2000, p. 529). Consequently, “it might lead to indecisiveness and inefficiency”, claimed Andeweg (2000, p. 529).
As far as the second point of the stability and sustainability is concerned, variations among the electoral systems should also be related to the emergence of terrorism (Aksoy & Carter 2012, p. 182). As mentioned above, due to the potential restriction on representation of minorities in the majoritarian system, the minorities may not accomplish seats in a parliament, so the emergence of extreme parties is feasible in contrast to PRS, where leaders of minorities are enabled to be present in a legislature. Hence, they can be empowered in setting the governmental agenda (Powell, 1982 cited in Blias 1991, p. 245); although, a wide representation of the minority might fail if high thresholds are applied in PRS, as in the case of Turkey, where “to help resolve the problems with Kurdish terrorist groups the Republican People’s...

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