What progress did Britain make towards becoming a democracy between 1867 and 1928? In 1867 Britain was a very undemocratic place. Only a small minority of people in the United Kingdom could vote. In a democracy we should be entitled to universal suffrage. This means that we should all be entitled to vote, no matter what our background.
Jacksonian democrats were only guardians of political democracy, individual liberty and equality of economic opportunity, and the United States Constitution when it benefitted them. They were inconsistent in their handlings of these political notions. Voting in the elections during the 1820s to 1840 was more popular than ever. After the financial panic of 1819 white males without land demanded that they have suffrage and the ability to hold office; they were granted in the era of the Jacksonian Democracy (PK). White men now had universal manhood suffrage.
It can be argued that FPTP has created a clear two party system. This can be illustrated because post-war only Labour and Conservatives have been in power. Labour or Conservatives have been the government every election because they have a lot of support throughout the UK, and therefore come first in many constituencies. To form a government, a party must have the majority of seats throughout the UK, which Labour or Conservatives always do. In 2005, the Liberal Democrats had 22% of the overall vote in the UK, sharing, but because of the FPTP system they only won 62 seats out of the 646 constituencies in the UK, this shows this system as clearly an unfair.
The main functions of UK Parliament are legitimating of political power of the executive through being a democratically elected body, scrutiny and influence of the proposals made by the executive through votes on the passing of Bills as well as the elimination of Governments through votes of no confidence. The recruitment of Government ministers from MPs also falls to Parliament through MPs, as does law making and deliberation on current events affecting the nation. Representation of citizens within the UK is expected of Parliament. However, a widely held public belief is that Parliament is unrepresentative of the current population within Britain. Many people say the ‘Commons are male-dominated since in 2005 only 19% of MP’s were women.
Majoritarian democracy is a democracy based upon majority rule of a society's citizens. Countries such as the UK, USA and Canada operate on the basis of representative democracy where the people vote for representatives who then decide policy initiatives. Other countries such as Uruguay, Switzerland and Latin America operate on the basis of direct democracy where people decide upon policy initiatives directly. Source A suggests that the people (voters) are sovereign and what that they have the final say whereas Source B suggests the opposite in that the people feel “politicians are failing and disconnected from the British people”. Democracy means “power to the people” and Source A suggests that this is what is happening and the people are happy with the voting system.
But Andrew Jackson thought that voting rights should be given to all white males. Also Jefferson thought only educated political elite could run for office but Jackson thought that any white male could run for office. Another thing that the Jeffersonian and Jacksonian Democracy disagreed on was on economic problems. For example, Jefferson thought the Yeomen farmers were the “chosen
Discuss the view that the UK has a two party system (30) It has been argued strongly for quite some time that the UK has a two party system; this is predominantly illustrated through the successes of the Conservatives and Labour parties. However the 2010 election proved otherwise and suggests there is now a reason to class the UK as having a multi-party system- the success of the Liberal Democrats. Firstly there is some strong evidence that shows that the UK must have a two party system because the third most important party in politics, the Liberal Democrats, are unable to win on their own. Ever since they were founded in 1988 they have never managed to seize power by themselves. They are dependent on a coalition government because so far they have never had a majority in Parliament.
Individual members have little or no power, how accurate is this statement? (25marks). Some people believe that individual members are not important in party politics, as they have little or no power, but different party members have different responsibilities than others. In the Labour party the members, union and MP's can vote for the leader of the party, they all have 33% of the vote so they all have equal amount of power in that aspect of party politics. The election of the leader is very important part of political parties as people now vote more for a prime minster than governing party, for example conservative’s won over Labour because David Cameron was seen as more enthusiastic and inspirational then Gordon brown, where he was seen as dull and boring.
As compared to their predecessors and contemporaries, they were most certainly the more democratic party. But, they were somewhat less democratic than present-day Democrats. Most states had either universal white manhood suffrage or taxpayer qualifications for voting rights, and there was a higher voter turnout. For their time, they were an extremely democratic party, but they did not advocate woman’s suffrage or non-white suffrage. However, as shown by Documents B and C, Jackson’s decisions concerning the National Bank certainly did not show a democratic trend; nor did his actions portrayed in Document G, nor the ones that made Document F necessary.
The current First Past the Post system leads to an unfair system of representation. For example, in the 2010 general elections, although the Conservative party gained 36% of the vote they ended up receiving 47% of the seats in the House of Commons. For this reason, smaller parties such as the Liberal Democrats do the worse out of this system. In the same elections, although they gained 23% of the vote they only got 9% of the seats. This is one reason that the Westminster electoral system is in need of reform- proportional systems deliver a much more representable result which is more democratic and means that all votes have the same value.