Chapter

Normative arguments for and against compulsory voting

Sarah Birch

in Full Participation

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print February 2009 | ISBN: 9780719077623
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701874 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7228/manchester/9780719077623.003.0003
Normative arguments for and against compulsory voting

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This chapter outlines and assesses the principal normative arguments that have been made for and against compulsory electoral participation. These claims fall into three principal categories: arguments relating to rights and duties, legitimacy and collective rationality arguments, and evaluations of the practical consequences of making electoral participation mandatory. After reviewing these arguments, the chapter then summarises the empirical claims made by normative theorists whose main objective is to test these claims.

Keywords: compulsory electoral participation; rights and duties; collective rationality; normative theorists

Chapter.  9004 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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