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8.28. The student will be able to compare and contrast democracy and R epublic. Warm Up. How is it possible that a president can lose the popular vote but still win? Is this the way our system should function?. Two types of democracy. Direct democracy Power vested directly in the people

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The student will be able to compare and contrast democracy and Republic.

warm up
Warm Up
  • How is it possible that a president can lose the popular vote but still win?
    • Is this the way our system should function?
two types of democracy
Two types of democracy
  • Direct democracy
    • Power vested directly in the people
      • All citizens take part in each decision made
      • Majority rule, no protection for minority
  • Indirect democracy
    • Citizens elect representatives to make decisions for them
      • This is also referred to as a Republic

Definition of a republic: power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them. Protection by rule of law.

so you think you can you dance republic or democracy
So you think you can you dance…Republic or Democracy?
  • Start- Audience has small part and (unelected) judges vote.
  • End- Popular vote.
key elements of our system
Key elements of our system:
  • Citizen Involvement
  • System of Representation
  • Rule of Law
  • Electoral System
  • Equality
  • Freedom, Liberty, and Rights
  • Education
1 citizen involvement
Direct Democracy: Citizens take part personally in deliberations and vote on issues. Citizens debate and vote on all laws.

Representative Democracy: Citizens choose (elect) other citizens to debate and pass on laws.

1) Citizen Involvement
  • Voting.
  • Political parties and/or interest groups.
  • Political meetings or public hearings, discussing politics, calling your representative.
elitist theories of democracy
Elitist theories of democracy

Proponents Say:

  • Elites (usually “experts” but not necessarily) should rule.
  • Citizens choose between elite proposals.
  • Result is a smoothly running and efficient government and society.
  • Politics is too complex for average citizens to be able to create good policy.
elitist theories of democracy1
Elitist theories of democracy

Opponents Say:

  • Efficiency is not as important as citizen influence on policy making.
  • Average citizen is capable of understanding the complexity of politics.
participatory democracy
Participatory Democracy
  • Low voter turnout should not be “rationalized.”
  • Advocate “Citizen Law Makers” People are more likely to follow laws they help make.
  • If we must have representative democracy then we must create incentives for more participation.

For example:

  • Term limits
  • Recall Elections
why is voter turnout so low in the usa
Why is voter turnout so low in the USA?
participatory democracy1
Participatory Democracy
  • Opponents Say:
    • Impractical in large republics
    • Policies will less often be made by experts

Should we be

Forced to vote?

2 a system of representation
2) A system of Representation
  • Citizens delegate power to representatives to act for them.
    • Based upon the 2010 census there is one representative for every 710,767 citizens.
Should representatives simply reflect the interests of its constituency or should they be independent agents?
  • Edmund Burke (1729-1797): representatives are independent agents.
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778): “Any law which the people have not ratified in person is null, it is not a law.”
3 rule of law
3) Rule of Law
  • Law is supreme,
  • nobody is above the law, even those who make law
  • against divine right


  • popular sovereignty—all power emanates from the people.
4 the electoral system
4) The Electoral system
  • Conflict over procedure of choosing representatives
  • Electoral process begins with the selection of candidates—But how does one become a candidate?
  • Importance of access to information.
  • Result of not voting is the transference of political power to others.
honors is this how a republic should work
Honors… Is this how a republic should work?
  • A presidential candidate could be elected with as a little as 21.8% of the popular vote by getting just over 50% of the votes in DC and each of 39 small states.
  • This is true even when everyone votes and there are only two candidates.

    • From Jesse Ruderman
majority rule
Majority Rule
  • %50 + 1
  • US system is “Winner take all” or “first past the post”.
  • Result: Minority view is not well represented?
in europe
In Europe…
  • Proportional representation
  • Seats are allocated in the legislature on the basis of percentage of votes cast for party A=%35 B = %30 C= %25 D = %10.
  • Governments are formed in coalition with other parties in order to make %50 + 1.
minority voice
Minority Voice
  • Some rights can’t be taken away by the majority.
  • In the USA, government cannot take rights away without 2/3rd house and senate and ¾ of state legislative
5 equality
5) Equality
  • Definition: sameness in relevant aspects
  • Disagreement over definition:
  • political equality
  • equality before the law
  • equality of opportunity
  • economic equality
  • equality of respect or social equality;
natural rights and civil rights
Natural Rights and Civil Rights:
  • Natural Rights: Rights a person has a human being
  • Civil Rights: Rights derived from government.
how do we limit government
How do we limit Government?
  • Frequent elections
  • Watch dogs
  • Civil disobedience
  • Protest
  • Revolution
simulation direct democracy versus indirect
Simulation Direct Democracy Versus Indirect
  • 2 parties
    • Stars - Majority
    • Stripes- Minority
dol exit ticket
DOL/ Exit Ticket
  • Do you think the founders wanted everyone to be able to vote?
  • Honors- Why do you think that only white, land owning males were allowed to vote in the early days of the American Republic?