Foreign intervention in democratic elections is a hot political topic in the US and the West in general. Allegations of collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign during the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election have overshadowed the start of 45th president’s first term in office, leading to the appointment of a special counsel to investigate ties between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. In this new blog series, we will explore the topic of foreign intervention in elections. Here we begin with the latest political science theory behind election interference. Continue reading
Mandatory voting is a much-debated topic whenever elections roll around. There are a number of countries around the world that require their citizens to show up at the polls on election day. In this installment of our blog series on voter participation, we discuss the arguments for and against compulsory voting. Continue reading
Election fraud is indeed one of the darker sides of democracy. Read on to learn more about some of the most common types of election fraud that you may encounter in your voting career.
It’s not the voting that’s democracy; it’s the counting.
Tom Stoppard (1937-), a Czech-born British playwright
With its numerous referendums, Switzerland is regarded as the model democratic state. However, a relative low number of citizens use this method of influencing politics directly. Previous referendums have had a voter turnout of around 30%. That is why the Swiss, as well as other countries, are thinking about introducing compulsory voting. In this part of our series, we have collected and summarized the advantages and disadvantages to this proposal. Continue reading
In North America, voting is not compulsory. In a democracy, individuals can decide for themselves if they make use of their right to vote. Still, non-voters are often in the media focus. Newspapers report about the voter turnout in elections even on Election Day. Days before, you can find raising requests to go vote in social media. Continue reading
Many years citizens have fought for suffrage – and still do. Suffrage is one of the highest commodities in democracy. A commodity, which many citizens see as natural. Therefore, some countries introduced compulsory voting, in some it is discussed.
An example is Switzerland, which is on the one hand admired for its referendums but on the other hand suffers from a low turnout. It is so low, that many ask to introduce an electoral duty. However, should a right become an obligation? Is this even democratic?
We try to find answers to these questions in our new series. Continue reading
I’m tired of hearing it said that democracy doesn’t work. Of course it doesn’t work. We are supposed to work it.
Alexander Woollcott (1887-1943), US-American journalist and autho
Non-voters go against our understanding of democracy. People have fought around the globe for centuries to be part of the democratic process. Even today, some are still fighting for that right. Being able to cast one’s vote in an election is important for every citizen.