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Questions tagged [referendum]

Questions related to a general vote by the electorate on a single political question which has been referred to them for a direct decision. This tag should be used alongside the country when for a specific referendum.

6
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3answers
322 views

Why are referendums held? Are they not inherently anti-democratic?

One thing I've noticed is that people often speak favorably of referendums. I used to do so as well. My thinking was, what could be bad about an election that allows the people to directly vote on a ...
13
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5answers
628 views

Is a second EU Referendum undemocratic?

People often say a second referendum is undemocratic. The first referendum was partially based on incorrect/dishonest information. After over two years of the general public viewing the government ...
1
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3answers
122 views

What are the reasons for not having a voter turnout threshold for a nation-wide referendum?

Romania held a referendum that failed to be validated due to low voter turnout and the 30% threshold limit (this was lowered from 50% a few years ago). The leader of the main party in power thinks ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Health care ballot initiative for nurse staffing: why no compromise?

Next month the voters in Massachusetts USA will be asked to decide whether to enact a law mandating certain specific nurse-to-patient staffing ratios in hospitals. Why was there no compromise? Why did ...
5
votes
1answer
218 views

When can a UK referendum result be officially declared “invalid”?

There has been new allegations of "breaching of rules" by some pro-Brexit groups in the Brexit referendum. This new allegations join previous ones that electoral laws have been broken (also here). ...
36
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3answers
7k views

What happens if it is proved that “vote leave” campaign broke campaigning laws?

This Guardian article argues about connections between Cambridge Analytica and Brexit referendum. There is a paragraph that tells us about some restrictions related to how information and money can ...
5
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2answers
193 views

Is a Dutch referendum valid if the no-vote exceeds the yes-vote, but does not exceed 50%?

In the Dutch Intelligence and Security Services Act referendum, 2018, preliminary results indicate 47.3% of votes in favour and 48.8% of votes in opposition, with the remaining votes blank and a ...
7
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1answer
118 views

Can the Tweede Kamer or anyone else withdraw a law if an advisory referendum on it has already been requested?

Edit 2018-08-28: The law in question has been retracted as of 2018-07-10, so this question is now of historical interest only. In The Netherlands, the Wet Raadgevend Referendum (Law Advisory ...
5
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1answer
276 views

Can Spain be suspended from the EU?

Catalonia held a referendum for independence. The police threatened and attacked the citizens of Spain/Catalonia. Article 7 says that if a country violates the rights of their citizens they could be ...
2
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1answer
141 views

For the 2017 Catalan independence referendum, are there any turnout estimates counting only polling stations where voters were actually able to vote?

According to preliminary official results, the turnout at the Catalan independence referendum was 42.58%, but Wikipedia also notes that The Catalan government estimated that polling stations ...
33
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5answers
9k views

Why do some Catalans want to become independent?

Why do some Catalans want to become independent? What has changed recently to increase their desire to be independent? I'd like to understand this situation, as I am currently completely ignorant ...
-3
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2answers
162 views

Independence referendum Vs Country sovereignty

I was wondering under what conditions an independence referendum can be a valid referendum. It seems to me that no matter the outcome no sovereign nation would accept part of the country seceding. ...
2
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0answers
122 views

Why bother stopping people from voting? [duplicate]

In Operation Anubis, the Spanish police attempted in various ways to stop the Catalan independence referendum, 2017 from taking place. I don't understand why the bother. The Spanish constitutional ...
23
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4answers
663 views

In what way is the Catalan referendum illegal, rather than inconsequential, under Spanish law?

What is the Spanish government's stated justification for today (2017-10-01)'s police actions? I understand how the referendum is illegitimate (as in, meaningless) under Spanish law, but I don't ...
74
votes
7answers
13k views

Why would Madrid be so insistent on preventing the Catalonian independence referendum?

On the day of the Catalonian independence referendum, there were plenty of reports about Madrid's efforts to prevent the referendum from taking place, including large number of police shooting rubber ...
3
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2answers
286 views

Have Catalonian politicians addressed a scenario where one or more border districts would prefer to stay with Spain after the independence?

Assuming that the Catalan independence somehow goes through and Madrid sanctions an official exit referendum, has anyone addressed the self-determination rights of individual Catalan districts? I ...
0
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2answers
352 views

What are plausible possible outcomes after the Catalan referendum? [duplicate]

The Wikipedia page on the Catalan independence referendum couldn't be more confusing if it was written in hieroglyphics. In the aftermath of the referendum, what are the plausible and likely possible ...
1
vote
1answer
176 views

Did any country with occupied territories hold a national referendum?

According to Wikipedia, Georgia has a significant part of its country occupied by Russia: [...] territories occupied by Russia after the Russo-Georgian War in 2008. They consist of the regions of ...
1
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2answers
236 views

Why were so many referendums about marriage definition initiated in the recent years?

Recently (in the last decade or so) there were quite many referendums (or are about to be held) about marriage definition. Some initiatives try to clearly define family as a union between a man and a ...
3
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2answers
288 views

Did those who voted to stay in the EC also vote to leave the EU?

A question popped into my mind the other day concerning the two referenda concerning the European Union issued by the UK Government. The first took place on 5 June 1975 on whether the UK should stay ...
4
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2answers
219 views

Why did Switzerland's referendum about basic income proponents propose actual amounts?

According to Wikipedia, Switzerland had a referendum on 5th June 2016 that also included the "basic income" topic: By October 2013 more than 130,000 citizens had signed, meaning a referendum on ...
12
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3answers
649 views

If the independence vote in Catalunya is successful. What are the possible outcomes?

The autonomous parliament of Catalunya is about to hold a referendum to secede from Spain. Given that Catalunya has their own police force. What are the possible outcomes if the Catalan people vote ...
7
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1answer
829 views

Why do major referendums have a 50% threshold to change the status quo, rather than a higher value?

The latest Brexit referendum passed with barely a couple percent over the 50% threshold, despite being a major constitutional change with significant consequences for many generations to come. ...
8
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2answers
344 views

Does the 16th April Turkish referendum result actually have any meaningful effect?

At the time of writing this question, the Turkish referendum for changing the Constitution has just finished with approval of these changes (about 51% for "Yes"). According to this source, Turkish ...
1
vote
1answer
842 views

Is there a ballot Initiative at the Federal level? [duplicate]

I understand that, roughly, 20 states have a Ballot Initiative process. To clarify: A citizen may gather a set number of signatures, on a petition, to have an issue or item placed upon a ballot for ...
4
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2answers
358 views

Do public referenda overrule political rights, or are they an expression of democracy?

Margaret Thatcher famously opined that "referendums are the tools of dictators and demagogues". Strangely the position today seems uncannily similar to the days when Edmund Burke penned his famous ...
5
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2answers
931 views

Why does mostly liberal California vote for death penalty?

On Election Day 2016 in California: Proposition to legalize cannabis won Proposition to repeal death penalty lost The rest of the propositions were mostly liberal, and most of them won; also the ...
1
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1answer
92 views

Which states had ballot initiatives to legalize marijuana in 2016?

538 had sporadic news in their live blog about individual state initiatives to legalize marijuana in 2016. That led me to be curious: is there a full list of states where that topic was on the ballot ...
15
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2answers
2k views

Will the British Parliament prevent “Brexit”?

So today, the High Court ruled that the Parliament has to approve the British exit of the European Union. From what I see, this is their possibility to prevent Brexit and remain in the European Union -...
5
votes
1answer
210 views

What are the rules of what goes into referenda in Switzerland?

Wikipedia page for Politics of Switzerland mentions that any changes to Constitution are mandatory as referenda, other things are optional. But who, what and how decides what things actually end up ...
-1
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1answer
130 views

Referendum on official contact with the Dalai Lama? [closed]

Could you imagine referendums on contact with the Dalai Lama? In which countries could it be possible with today's practices? (I think perhaps Switzerland?). Is it likely that it could be possible ...
5
votes
1answer
422 views

How can the federal United States congress conduct a public referendum vote?

Is it possible for congress to delegate voting on specific policies to a nationwide popular vote at the federal level? If so, how would this be accomplished?
4
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2answers
236 views

Protecting a democracy from an influential few

According to some opinions I have read, the recent referendum in the UK was won by a small number of men in politics and media, who immediately after the result disowned some of the major claims and ...
39
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9answers
11k views

Why was the Brexit referendum conducted as a simple majority vote?

For votes which can have extremely long-term consequences, (like changing the constitution) a simple majority vote is usually not enough. Such voting and referendums are not about electing a temporary ...
8
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3answers
979 views

What is the typical error in large vote counts?

Well the EU referendum happened in the UK and there was some talk about what happens if the result is a tie, or if it is very close. Apparently, there would not be a recount unless there was a ...
17
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5answers
690 views

Are there examples of when Parliament decided against the results of a Referendum?

For those hiding under a rock, the UK’s future in the EU is being decided right now by means of a referendum. This, coupled with the constant talk of a plebiscite for marriage equality in Australia ...
43
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6answers
8k views

Must the UK leave the EU?

The BBC has projected that a majority voted for the UK to leave the EU. To what extent is the referendum binding?
3
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5answers
340 views

EU referendum odds

Today is the day of Britain's EU referendum and since the polls opened, the odds on "Brexit" have skyrocketed and the economy has started reacting as though the UK will stay in the EU. None of the ...
8
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4answers
722 views

Is it only the UK who is holding a referendum to stay or leave the EU? If so, why?

Is the UK the only country holding a referendum on staying or leaving the EU? If so, why is only the UK doing this? This question isn't a duplicate of this one, which asks why other countries in ...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

Do TTIP and CETA ratification in The Netherlands require primary legislation that can be subject to a consultative referendum?

In The Netherlands, the Wet raadgevend referendum (Advisory Referendum Act) states that most types of primary laws can be subjected to a suspensory, non-binding referendum if requested shortly after ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Could the City of London leave the EU while the UK remained?

In 1985 Greenland voted to leave the European Economic Community, mainly to have more control over their fishing. Greenland also happens to be part of Denmark. Let's assume the United Kingdom's ...
9
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2answers
225 views

How does offering two almost identical options in a Preferential Voting system affect the outcome?

New Zealand recently voted on a potential new design for their flag. The question was: "If the New Zealand flag changes, which flag would you prefer?" The five options were chosen by a government ...
14
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5answers
2k views

Why do the Spanish government not organize a national referendum for Catalonia independence?

The reason the Spanish government was not willing to allow Catalonia to handle any referendum is because a Spanish province is not allowed to single handedly secede, such decisions should be taken by ...
11
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2answers
1k views

If a country leaves the European Union, would also leave the European Economic Area?

In the event of some member country supporting leaving the EU, would that mean that the country would stop participating in the EEA? Other countries participate in it, despite not being EU members. e....
8
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1answer
274 views

Why aren't all matters referendable?

Recently there was a parliamentary decision in Portugal that approved a referendum to the co-adoption and adoption by homosexual couples (already allowed to marry). This is generating a scandal in ...
6
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2answers
2k views

Which country had the first constitution adopted by referendum?

Which country was the first to adopt a codified constitution by a reasonably democratic public referendum? I'm including in this non-binding referendums, such as those held in the Australian colonies ...
4
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1answer
139 views

Do referendums lead to significantly different decisions than when decisions are taken by parliament?

One argument that is used against decision-making by popular referendum is that they tend to lead to populist, perhaps even impossible decisions. It seems that referendums can lead to decisions that ...
9
votes
1answer
341 views

What are typical consequences for a political party of losing an independence referendum?

The signature policy of the devolved Scottish government's ruling party (the Scottish National Party) is that Scotland should be an independent state, separate from the United Kingdom. To that end, ...