Chapter

Who counts?

Robert E. Goodin

in Innovating Democracy

Published in print July 2008 | ISBN: 9780199547944
Published online September 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780191720116 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199547944.003.0007
Who counts?

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Constituting the demos — deciding who gets a say, or a vote — is the first task of any democracy, but it is a topic on which democratic theory has surprisingly little to offer. ‘Enfranchising all affected interests’ is a good start. When unpacked, however, it turns out that the most defensible version of that rule requires us to extend membership in the demos to every interest that would probably be affected by any possible decision arising out of any possible agenda. Given the broad scope of the ‘possible’, that means we ought, in principle, include just about everyone worldwide in the same demos.

Keywords: constituting the demos; political membership; franchise; all affected interests

Chapter.  12061 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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