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gov 312L, 02.06.08 - 3 Much more commonality between...

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02/06/08 Liberal Democracy in the U.S. – II I. Checks and Balances? Presidentialism/Parliamentarism A. U.S. Presentialism: Clear separation of powers 1. Fixed terms of office a. Can only remove presidents for serious criminal wrongdoing b. President can’t dissolve Congress c. Voters can’t elect new reps at random to stop gridlock 2. Branches have to compromise to get things done: no extremes pushing their will 3. Safeguards: a. Electoral college b. Directly-elected Congress split into two houses, so they have to compromise too c. Independent judiciary B. Parliamentarism in Europe (e.g. Great Britain): Attenuated separation of powers 1. Citizens elect Parliament, Parliament elects government 2. If gov’t loses Parliament majority support, it can be voted out at any time; similarly, gov’t can call new elections and reorganize Parliament
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Unformatted text preview: 3. Much more commonality between Parliament and gov’t than between U.S. President and Congress 4. Parliament is an expression of popular sovereignty, so there’s no judicial review and no constitution to trump Parliament 5. Maximum term: 5 years; minimum term: none C. Government strength in Parliamentarism: gov’t is more powerful than Parliament 1. Gov’t uses precarious position to lay claim to support 2. Emphasizes that the people know Parliament elected the gov’t and would be suspicious if Parliament didn’t support gov’t 3. Threat of gov’t collapsing means Parliament supports gov’t to keep from being ousted by citizens 4. Gov’t supported by party discipline...
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