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Critically examine the ways a pressure group contributes to representative democracy

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Introduction

Critically examine the ways a pressure group contributes to representative democracy 1. states what representative democracy is 2. three/four paragraphs on what the pro-pluralist view is. Use the cards. 3. For each statement to ensure that you link the idea to the title 4. Throughout give examples of pressure groups to support your case 5. The case against. Now outline the anti-pluralist view ( Robert's page 331) In a representative democracy, citizens elect representatives to make decisions for them. In doing this, citizens hand over the responsibility for making decisions to someone else. In Britian voters elect members of parliament's (MPs) to represent them every four to five years and this makes the representatives in some way accountable to the electorate. However many are unsatisfied with their representation and join pressure groups to make their views heard. ...read more.

Middle

However one thing is for sure, four to five years is a long time for the electorate to not have a say in their government. New issues come up and popular opinion changes, having pressure groups allow the population to be heard more regularly - something which is surely good for a democracy which is meant to represent the people. Many people thing the system of having pressure groups complements a representative democracy because surely the right to join groups is a mark of a free society. Many people think minority voices are generally unheeded; pressure groups mean that these minorities can be heard more effectively an example of this is the pressure group Gay lib. Another positive thing about pressure groups of that they encourage political participation. In a country where the number of people who vote is going down, pressure groups allow people to become more politically aware especially those under the age of eighteen. ...read more.

Conclusion

The pressure groups may not be representative of their members and their officers are not usually elected. Furthermore many Marxists say that pressure groups are just a tool used by the elite distract the population from seriously challenging them politically. They say the elite (the government) make the population believes that they can make a difference using pressure groups when this is not the case. They point out that pressure groups only normally succeed when government policy is in their favour and that the government only does what it wants to and doesn't take a balanced view point. To conclude I think that pressure groups play an important part in our representative democracy. There allow people to participate between elections, and they allow minority voices to be heard. However pressure groups shouldn't be the be all and end all as certain parts of them detract from a representative democracy. For instance there an elected and the government houses and agenda. By Hannah Gray ...read more.

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