What are the disadvantages of parliamentary democracy

Pros and cons - parliamentary democracy

Parliamentary democracy is a popular form of government that has gained acceptance more often than other forms of government. However, there are also advantages and disadvantages here that could well challenge a government of this configuration.

Parliamentary democracy has some basic characteristics

In the Federal Republic of Germany, the form of government is a representative democracy. This means that the government is not formed by the people themselves, but consists of representatives of the people who represent the people politically. Such a representation of the people is, for example, the parliament, which is why this form of government is also called parliamentary democracy. The people do not control the political fortunes themselves, but elect the representatives who are to do so for a certain period of time.

  • In a parliamentary democracy there is a close connection between the legislative and executive authorities. The ministerial office and the parliamentary mandate are characterized by a certain degree of compatibility.
  • The ministers usually come from within the ranks of Parliament and are only made up of external experts in certain cases when it is advisable. Examples of this are offices such as foreign ministers and defense ministers.
  • The government can be deposed in a representative system. This happens as soon as it is established by a vote of no confidence that the majority in parliament no longer trusts the government. Another reason for dismissing the government is, for example, Parliament's refusal to budget.
  • In a representative system, the government and parliament are highly interdependent. This means that the head of government has a firm grip on his own party or faction in parliament. In this form of government, the parliamentarians' ties usually benefit their own party, in contrast to a presidential system like the one in the United States of America.
  • In parliament there is a government majority, this is the number of members in a parliament who support the government and thus keep it in office. The government majority usually includes members of the government, the ruling party and the coalition party or coalition parties, should there be more than one. Since there is a clearly identifiable majority of the government in parliament, there is also an opposition that is easy to identify.

Advantages and disadvantages of representative democracy

As with any other system of government, parliamentary democracy has its advantages and disadvantages. These are explained in a little more detail in this part of the article.

  • A disadvantage of this form of government is that there must be very strict discipline between the different factions. This is especially true when two different parties form a government in the form of a coalition. Because then both parties inevitably have to make a lot of compromises, which can lead to a bad mood within the coalition. The result would be an unstable government.
  • Individual interests and lobbying find their way into a representative system more easily because it is much easier for the respective interest groups to win over a small group of MPs for their purposes than a larger group from the people.
  • It is also disadvantageous that political power is concentrated in a small group of people, namely politicians. The people, in the form of citizens entitled to vote, have little influence on the vote on political issues, and MPs can easily get the reputation of being too far removed from the people's expectations and thus politics too from the expectations or needs to remove the people.
  • One advantage of this form of democracy is that decisions can be made faster and more cheaply because the members of the parliament can concentrate fully on politics, which has led to a professionalisation of politics. In this way, expert opinions on certain political issues can be consulted more quickly.
  • Another advantage is that the so-called popular anger or other short-term reactions of the demographic groups do not have a particularly large influence on politics, as this is rather long-sighted.

The advantages and disadvantages can be interpreted in different ways, as with other political systems, which mostly depends on the point of view, but all in all one can say that parliamentary democracy is a varied and multifaceted system of government that keeps itself in balance.

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