Parliamentary vs Presidential Systems of Government

Topics: Presidential system, Parliamentary system, Separation of powers Pages: 3 (1016 words) Published: November 21, 2011
Can a democracy endure? The challenge of its endurance is consolidation, which requires years of commitment. Not all democracies are the same, but its survival depends on its institutional system. Arrangements of representation, schemes for the separation of powers and oversight, and the like all vary under different forms of democracies. Most existing democracies today are either presidential or parliamentary in form; many governments are semi or hybrid in either presidentialism or parliamentarism, but the two systems in their purest sense will be discussed and compared. In the end, the best promises a democratic government such that a democratic state can grow and persist even in the face of poverty, ethnic and religious division, and traditions of authoritarian rule lie in parliamentarism. This is not to say presidentialism does not work; the United States and French governments have this structure. But the evidence that parliamentary democracies survive longer under the above conditions is undeniable. A presidential system of democracy is a form of government where the executive branch exists and presides separate from the legislature. The President is chosen in a popular election separate from the legislature for a fixed term. Therefore, two democratically legitimate institutions exist. The president also has a dual-hatted role, as he is the chief executive and the symbolic head of state. The executive has full control of creating his cabinet/administration (although member appointment typically requires confirmation by the legislative body). The president may not have the ability to legislate directly; he is not a voting member (because he is not a member of the legislature like the Prime Minister), and may not be allowed to introduce bills. In some presidential systems like the United States, the chief executive has the power to veto acts of the legislature; conversely, the legislature can override a presidential veto, usually requiring...

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