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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Imperfect Democracies

The Democratic Deficit in Canada and the United States

Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Imperfect Democracies

The Democratic Deficit in Canada and the United States

Canada and the United States are consistently ranked among the most democratic countries in the world, yet voices expressing concern about the quality of these democracies are becoming louder and more insistent. Critics maintain that the two countries suffer from a “democratic deficit,” a deficit that raises profound questions about the legitimacy and effectiveness of their democratic institutions. Imperfect Democracies brings together Canadian and American scholars to compare how the democratic deficit plays out in the two nations. An important contribution to the field of democratic theory and the study of democratic institutions, this timely book will spark debate on both sides of the border.


360 pages


Table of Contents

Introduction / Patti Tamara Lenard and Richard Simeon

1 The Democratic Deficit: Canada and the United States in Comparative Perspective / Pippa Norris

2 Citizen Expectations and Democratic Performance: The Sources and Consequences of Democratic Deficits from the Bottom Up / Neil Nevitte and Stephen White

3 Defining and Identifying a “Democratic Deficit” / David Beetham

4 Democracy in American Elections / Michael McDonald

5 “Can Canada’s Past Electoral Reforms Help to Understand the Debate over Its Method of Election?” / John C. Courtney

6 Regulating Political Finance in Canada: Contributions to Democracy? / Lisa Young

7 Campaign Finance Reform in the United States / Robert C. Boatright

8 Imperfect Legislatures / David C. Docherty

9 Democracy’s Wartime Deficits: Presidential Prerogatives and Liberal Democracy in America / Daniel J. Tichenor

10 The “Centre” of the Democratic Deficit: Power and Influence in Canadian Political Executives / Graham White

11 Extending the Franchise to Non-Citizen Residents in Canada and the United States: How Bad is the Democratic Deficit? / Patti Tamara Lenard and Daniel Munro

12 Citizen Representation and the American Jury / Ethan J. Leib and David L. Ponet

13 Supplementary Democracy? Democratic Deficits and Citizens’ Assemblies / Amy Lang and Mark E. Warren

14 Reflections on the “Democratic Deficit” in Canada and the United States / Simone Chambers and Patti Tamara Lenard

Index

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