Democracy Reform

Sir Winston Churchill once said that democracy is the worst form of government except for all the rest. He is right. Its the best form of government but it also has its flaws. I think that its flaws endanger democracy and needs to be fixed. This blog is for like minded people who want to see democracy improved. I invite people to sumbit essays. I will publish even those I do not agree with so long as I find them interesting.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Mr Spog's reply

Mr. Spog said...
If a senate consisting of members with life tenure were considered too undemocratic (as seems likely), one possibility would be to qualify its veto power, much as the U.S. President's veto power is already qualified. For example, the lower house might be given the right to override a Senate veto by a 2/3 vote. (Presumably the lower house would then need, e.g., a 3/4 supermajority to override combined vetoes by the Senate and President...)

This approach to limiting the formal powers of the upper house was proposed by the 19th-century British political thinker and historian W.E.H. Lecky, who saw that the legitimacy of the Lords was eroding, and hoped to arrest this decay by drawing clearer boundaries around the upper house's powers. Without some formal rule of this type, any move by the Lords to contradict the will of the Commons would be viewed as a threat to democratic supremacy. With such a rule, everyone would be assured that the Commons remained ultimately in charge (if it was sufficiently united on an issue), even if the Lords started to throw around its veto power quite often.


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