To What Extent Does Democracy in the Uk Need Reform?

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To what extent does democracy in the UK need reform? Democracy refers to any society or political system in which the people are able to make or influence decisions and where government is accountable to the people. In short, democracy means 'rule by the people'. In the UK the nature and state of democracy can be viewed from three perspectives: the nature of political institutions, the nature of political processes and the nature of political participation. The UK has a multi-level government, a system of free and fair democratic elections is present, basic rights and liberties of citizens are protected and there is a wide range of political parties and pressure groups. However, there are many criticisms of UK democracy which suggest it is in need of reform. The use of the first-past-the-post system at general elections, less political participation, the absence of a properly drafted bill of rights incorporated within a codified and entrenched constitution, presidentialism and the improper separation of powers are just a few of the issues which rise from UK democracy. It is unarguable that UK democracy is in crisis and is in need of reform, although some aspects are strong and should remain as they are. Elections are free and held regularly, however their often considered to be unfair and undemocratic. This is likely to be due to the first-past-the-post system which distorts party representation and unfortunately, smaller parties are often under-represented. A proportional representation system should be introduced to better the representation. This could however lead to extremist parties such as the BNP gaining seats in the Houses of Parliament. In the UK all competent adults are permitted to participate in political processes. There is freedom of association, of thought and of belief. General elections incorporate a wide franchise and operate under a
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