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University of Toronto St. George
Political Science
Jeffrey Kopstein

October 4 Reading Notes Comparing Democratic Systems Horowitz Attacks Linzs claims that parliamentary systems are better for a nation than presidency 1. Linzs sample is highly selective and skewed, principally from Latin America 2. His claims rest on exaggerated notions of presidency 3. They assume a particular system of electing the president, which is not necessarily the best system 4. By ignored the functions of a separately elected president, they defeat Linzs own admirable purposes Linz argues there is generally no lawful way to get rid of a failed president in the middle of his term, while parliamentary governments are forced into re-election (conflict is routinized and need not escalate to a crisis) Horowitz responds with the notion that presidents need not be elected on a plurality or majority- runoff 1. A system where presidents are elected on broadly distributed support alleviates the problem of the narrowly elected president who is disillusioned to a broader mandate Argues that Linzs analysis is too heavily based on
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