parliamentary government

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A system of government which allocates public decision-making powers to a house of elected representatives, or parliament, typically including decisions on national laws and regulations, the government budget and fiscal policy, and declarations of war with other nation-states. Specific arrangements vary widely between countries, for example regarding the frequency of elections, the number of chambers in parliament, who is entitled to vote, whether voting is obligatory or optional, how votes are converted into a number of appointed representatives, rules which affect the number of political parties or independent representitives, and the relationship between elected representatives and the head of state or the government. The common feature of such systems is that they seek to achieve a proper balance between governmental power and governmental responsiveness.

Subjects: Politics.

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