Study Cards on system, parties, power

What is a threshold?
What are important aspects for defining party systems?
- Number of parties competing for power.
- Relative size of the party, as reflected in their electoral and legislative strength.
- How the relevant parties relate to one another (party system characterized by cooperation and consensus, or by conflict and polarization?).

The pattern of relationships amongst parties constitutes a system only if it is characterized by stability and a degree of orderliness.
What is a party system?
A relatively stable network of relationships between parties that is structured by their number, size, and ideological orientation
What are the aspects of the consensus model?
- Proportional electoral system
- Multiparty system (sharing power/diffusion of power)
- Interest group: corporatist model (interest groups are organized into policy-making process. Regular institutionalized corporations and consultations between labor groups in the state. Organized system based on the idea of representation).
- Balance of power between the legislative and executive
- Executive: sharing of power
- Federal and decentralized government
- Bicameral system
- Rigid constitution
- Parliament subject to judicial review
- Independent central bank
What are the aspects of Majoritarian/Westminster model?
- Majority/plurality electoral system: one party has a mandate to be the government and has 'absolute power'. This party can enact the policies that he wants. The opposition is relatively weak.
- Two-party system
- Interest group system: pluralist model (free for all competition between interest groups that influence policy-making. Groups try to convince individual politicians with arguments).
- Dominance of executive power over the legislative
- Executive power: concentration of power 
- Unitary and centralized government
- Unicameral system (this concentrates power)
- Flexible constitution
- Parliamentary sovereignty
- Executive control over Central bank
What is a one-party system?
A single party enjoys a monopoly of power through the exclusion of all other parties
What is a one-party system?
Political system in which a single party enjoys a monopoly of power through the exclusion of all other parties.
Monopolistic parties function as permanent governments, with
What are the two types of one-party systems?
1) In socialist regimes where the ruling communist parties control all institutions and aspects of society
2) In anti-colonial nationalism in the developing world
What are the two different types of one-party systems?
1. Type found in state socialist regimes where 'ruling' communists parties have directed and controlled virtually all the institutions and aspects of society. Subject to strict ideological disciplines. Democratic centralism, cadre parties. Full-time officials who run the party, or apparatus, and exercise supervision over both the state machine and social institutions.

2. Associated with anti-colonial nationalism and state consolidation in the developing world. The 'ruling' party develops out of an independence movement that proclaimed the overriding need for nation building and economic development. Often weakly organized.
What is a two-party system?
A duopolistic system dominated by two major parties that have a roughly equal prospect of winning government power = USA and UK
What is a dominant-party system?
A number of parties compete for power in regular and popular elections, but there is always one major party that dominates = Japan, Sweden
What is a multiparty system?
Competition amongst more than two parties, reducing the chances of single-party government and increasing the likelihood of coalitions = the Netherlands
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