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Democratic Institutions

Political Science
Course Code
Jeffrey Kopstein

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Democratic Institutions
A method for choosing leaders
Universal franchise, secret ballot, majoritarianism
Emerge out of predemocratic context
Poor countries can become democracies but often dont stay that way
It depends on how wealthy you are
Different kinds of democratic institutions (ways of organizing different democractic
Different democratic insitions determine the different politics you get
Parliamentary vs Presidential System
Constitutions: Rules of the game Britain vs US
Ancient vs Modern Constitutions
Great Britain
No constitution written
History of continuity same institution for 600 years
Significant acts of parliament and documents (ex. Magna carta)
Custom ex. No law saying prime minister limited to a 5 year term
Important interpretation of laws
Importance of common law, judicial president, and interpretation
Law evolves
United States
Written constitution
Enumerates rights
Institution is product of human design rather then evolution
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