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.

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1answer
119 views

If a referendum on Northern Ireland joining the Republic of Ireland is narrowly defeated, what is the trigger for another referendum?

From Wikipedia's Good Friday Agreement article: The agreement reached was that Northern Ireland was part of the United Kingdom, and would remain so until a majority of the people both of Northern ...
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Why doesn't the UK hold a second Brexit referendum to clarify what the public wants from Brexit?

In following the ongoing Brexit drama I've seen claims that the first vote was unfair because it was only for yes/no and didn't say anything about what form an actual Brexit would take. This ...
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1answer
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Is there a more in-depth explanation why Asians in (Greater) London voted to leave the EU, breaking with the national trend for ethnic minorities?

A ward-level BBC analysis of the 2016 EU referendum pointed out these patterns of Asian vote in London, breaking with the national trend: White populations were generally more pro-Leave, and ethnic ...
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1answer
237 views

Losers Consent, Winners Lament? [closed]

There have been angry protests against the UK Parliamentary Election result and I commented that the result was democracy in action. In response, another person said that the protests are a result of ...
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1answer
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Are there any polls on the new Swiss immigration referendum question?

Apparently after the "betrayal" of the first Swiss immigration-limiting referendum (of Feb 2014) by their parliament, which passed a substantially watered down law (in 2016), there's now going to be ...
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Can a 'Second Referendum' on Brexit contain three options?

Lots of people seem to be calling for a second referendum on the United Kingdoms status as members of the European Union. The Labour Party policy is to renegotiate a deal with the European Union and ...
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3answers
255 views

Is it possible for the UK Parliament to create a legally binding referendum?

Throughout the Brexit saga, one thing I’ve heard repeatedly is that due to the principle of parliamentary sovereignty, referendums are not legally binding: Parliamentary sovereignty is a principle ...
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5answers
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Has the UK had an election, referendum, or similar result either not implemented or put again before being implemented (in modern times)?

Are there any examples from modern times of the result of a UK election, referendum, etc., not being implemented, or the question being put a second time (perhaps in modified form) before the first ...
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1answer
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What options do supporters of a confirmatory referendum have?

There is a considerable number of MPs who support a confirmatory referendum on the deal. What legal options do these MPs have now? If there are several possible strategies they can pursue, which one ...
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1answer
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Has Boris Johnson's government explained why its latest Brexit proposal does not include a referendum for Northern Ireland leaving the single market?

The "final offer" that Boris Johnson has made to the EU includes a provision that the single-market (for goods) arrangement for Northern Ireland needs to be explicitly approved and then extended by ...
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1answer
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Brexit - What was the question that the Referendum answered? [closed]

In Douglas Adams' Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Deep Thought comes up with the answer to the question of 'Life, the Universe, and Everything', which is 42. It then says the that the answer seems ...
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3answers
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Does Hong Kong have the right to hold a referendum for independence?

Does Hong Kong have the right to hold a referendum for independence? I am wondering if there was some kind of legal agreement when Hong Kong was ceded to China by Britain that guaranteed that Hong ...
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Is organizing “piggybacked” referendums something unusual in EU?

Romanians were also called to vote for a referendum when voting for EU Parliament elections in 2019. However, the organizing for diaspora voting was very problematic and many could not vote at all: ...
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What is a “confirmatory” referendum in the context of Brexit?

The topic of a second referendum on Brexit has been discussed since the time of the first referendum. However, recently, there is a lot of talk in UK politics about a "confirmatory" referendum. For ...
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Was there an OSCE mission observing the Scottish independence referendum?

Even though the United Kingdom is an established democracy, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) did observe for instance the 2017 general election. There's both a "needs ...
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1answer
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How many local recounts were conducted in the Scottish independence referendum?

A 2014 article in the Telegraph noted that The chief counting officer for the Scottish independence referendum has confirmed there can be no national recount even if the result is close. But ...
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6answers
837 views

What's the difference between repeating elections every few years and repeating a referendum after a few years?

There's a lot of talk in the UK these days about how holding a second referendum on Brexit would be "undemocratic" and "go against the spirit of referendums". However repeating a vote doesn't seem all ...
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1answer
518 views

Why isn't Northern Ireland demanding a referendum on joining Ireland, similar to the one in Scotland? [duplicate]

Northern Ireland looks like it's in a perfect position for a referendum on leaving the UK: it could instantly join its neighbor Ireland and remain a part of the EU, it has a long history of protesting ...
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3answers
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What will Scotland's status in the EU be, assuming the Scots vote for independence?

The Scots will vote on whether Scotland should be an independent country or not, on September 18, 2014. Assuming the majority vote is for independence, will Scotland remain in the European Union ...
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1answer
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Was the referendum on the Good Friday Agreement called “confirmatory” at the time?

In the context of a 2nd Brexit referendum discussion Peter Kyle Labour, Hove Last week, 268 Members voted for the principle of a confirmatory ballot—the largest number of votes for any ...
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Is the Crimean referendum legal?

Как известно, Верховная Рада Крыма в обход Конституции Украины приняла решение о проведении в Крыму 16 марта референдума по присоединению к России. (src) As was noted, the Supreme Council of ...
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Mechanics of a second Brexit referendum

Some people advocate a simple n-way ballot like: Remain Deal No deal But this splits the leave vote. An alternative is to use Single Transferable Vote, which in the case of a referendum would be an ...
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Why doesn't the Indian government hold a referendum in Kashmir?

On 21 April 1948, a resolution on Kashmir was adopted by the UNSC. According to that resolution, India should hold a referendum in Kashmir. Given the current chaotic situation in Kashmir, why doesn't ...
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Can a traditional nonconnected PAC spend money to support or oppose state ballot measures?

Assume a fully compliant FEC-registered nonconnected multicandidate PAC that already makes and reports direct contributions and also independent expenditures to influence the election of candidates in ...
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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 ...
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If/When UK leaves the EU, can a future goverment conduct a referendum to join the EU?

I wonder if after the current debate, the UK ends up leaving the EU on any terms, how soon can a future government conduct a referendum to join the EU?
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Why are there no referendums in the US?

The US has a (self-imposed) reputation of being a supremely democratic and free country. However, unlike many other democratic countries on the planet, the US has never had any national referendums. ...
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2answers
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What reason(s) have UK politicians given for not wanting another referendum on whether the UK should exit the EU or not? [duplicate]

This question is different from Why doesn't the UK hold a second Brexit referendum to clarify what the public wants from Brexit? because that question is asking about voting on the form that ...
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1answer
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Does India have something similar to a referendum proposition?

I am an Indian student in the US, and I have recently witnessed an election here. In California and Florida (I have seen a ballot for that state), the voters also vote on some key issues in addition ...
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1answer
242 views

How does an independence referendum work?

I am just curious how exactly do independence referendums work. For instance let us assume that some people meet the criteria for a referendum and want to make a non-binding referendum. If they go ...
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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 ...
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740 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 ...
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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 ...
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3answers
372 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 ...
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1answer
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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 ...
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1answer
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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 ...
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5answers
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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 ...
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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?
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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). ...
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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 ...
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1answer
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 -...
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1answer
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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 ...
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1answer
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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 ...
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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 ...
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5answers
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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 ...
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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 ...