Parliamentary versus presidential system

Parliamentary Versus Presidential System of Government
Parliamentary and presidential systems are the two dominant forms of democratic
government. There has been a raging debate as to which form of government is superior to the
other since a seminal article published by Juan J. Linz titled “The Perils of Presidentialism.” In
this short essay, I will argue that a parliamentary system of democratic government is superior to
a presidential system. In the first paragraph, I will briefly outline the main characteristics of both
the parliamentary and presidential systems. Then in the next paragraph, I will highlight with
supporting institutional facts as to why a parliamentary system is better than a presidential
system. In the conclusion, I will restate the main points of my argument.
The president is the head of both the government and the state in a presidential system.
As the chief executive officer of the government, the president supervises the undertakings of the
government and is expected to carry out certain responsibilities such as establishing the yearly
financial plan, validating or rejecting laws passed by the parliament, the appointment of
administrators and advisers to assist in government management. The presidential system also
separates the president from the legislative organ. It splits the legislative and administrative roles
of the government hence offer checks and balances to constrain the authority of both the
president and the parliament. Further, in a presidential system, the president and the members of
parliament are chosen independently by the citizens. On the other hand, the parliamentary system
formulates responsibilities of the head of government and head of state which are held by distinct
individuals. For instance, a state may have a monarch or president who assumes the role of head
of state, and a prime minister who take responsibility for leading the government. Moreover, the
chief executive like the prime minister is included in the legislative body or parliament.
Additionally, in such a system the members of parliament are elected by the citizens who in turn
are mandated to appoint one legislature amongst them to be the president.
A parliamentary system is better than a presidential system. There is overwhelming proof
for the parliamentary system. First, all prosperous nations except the US, which has a
presidential system, have adopted a parliamentary system. Parliamentary states lead in several
indices such as human development and corruption perception index. Political disruptions such
as coup d’états, assassinations, revolutions and political grumble tend to be less. Additionally,
the parliamentary system provides for accountability measures through shadow cabinet that acts
as watchdogs of the public interest. Such a cabinet also restrains the autocracy of the popular
party. Moreover, a parliamentarian form of government is more efficient with parameters to
thwart autocratic or dictatorial leadership. The parliamentary form of government also articulates
to the cardinal principle of democracy that states that “the government should be for the people
and by the people.” The above canon is fulfilled because the popular party is voted by the
citizens of the nation as representatives of their collective resolve, therefore presenting them with
an authentic voice in their regime. Parliamentary system also features a more efficient
meritocratic government structure than the presidential system. It has an integrated mechanism
for removal of a crummy leader by either the party, the head of state or vote of no confidence. In
contrast, the only legal option available in presidential system is through the bureaucratic
procedures of impeachment which in most cases result to coup d’état.
In conclusion, parliamentary systems are less prone to corruption, more efficient, stable,
accountable, and provide leaders with quality leadership qualities. It provides checks and
balances and protects the country from becoming autocratic. A majority of the successful
countries has embraced the parliamentary systems safe for the US.

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