From electowiki
Wikipedia has an article on:

According to

Majoritarianism is a traditional political philosophy or agenda that asserts that a majority (sometimes categorized by religion, language, social class, or some other identifying factor) of the population is entitled to a certain degree of primacy in society, and has the right to make decisions that affect the society. This traditional view has come under growing criticism, and liberal democracies have increasingly included constraints on what the parliamentary majority can do, in order to protect citizens' fundamental rights.[1]

This should not be confused with the concept of a majoritarian electoral system, which is a simple electoral system that usually gives a majority of seats to the party with a plurality of votes. A parliament elected by this method may be called a majoritarian parliament (e.g., the Parliament of the United Kingdom, or the Parliament of India).

Under a democratic majoritarian political structure, the majority would not exclude any minority from future participation in the democratic process. Majoritarianism is sometimes pejoratively referred to by its opponents as "ochlocracy" or "tyranny of the majority". Majoritarianism is often referred to as majority rule, which may refer to a majority class ruling over a minority class, while not referring to the decision process called majority rule. It is a belief that the majority community should be able to rule a country in whichever way it wants.

Advocates of majoritarianism argue that majority decision making is intrinsically democratic and that any restriction on majority decision making is intrinsically undemocratic. If democracy is restricted by a constitution which cannot be changed by a simple majority decision, then yesterday's majority is being given more weight than today's. If it is restricted by some small group, such as aristocrats, judges, priests, soldiers, or philosophers, then society becomes an oligarchy. The only restriction acceptable in a majoritarian system is that a current majority has no right to prevent a different majority emerging in the future; this could happen, for example, if a minority persuades enough of the majority to change its position. In particular, a majority cannot exclude a minority from future participation in the democratic process. Majoritarianism does not prohibit a decision being made by representatives as long as this decision is made via majority rule, as it can be altered at any time by any different majority emerging in the future.

One critique of majoritarianism is that systems without supermajority requirements for changing the rules for voting can be shown to likely be unstable.[2] Among other critiques of majoritarianism is that most decisions in fact take place not by majority rule, but by plurality, unless the voting system artificially restricts candidates or options to two only.[3] In turn, due to Arrow's paradox, it is not possible to have Ranked voting systems with more than two options that retain adherence to both certain "fairness" criteria and rational decision-making criteria.[3] Majoritarianism is often contrasted with Utilitarianism which can be achieved through Cardinal voting systems and avoids Arrow's paradox.

  1. A Przeworski, JM Maravall, I NetLibrary Democracy and the Rule of Law (2003) p. 223
  2. Salvador, Barbera; Jackson, Matthew O. (2004). "Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions". Quarterly Journal of Economics. 119 (3): 1011–48. CiteSeerX doi:10.1162/0033553041502207.
  3. a b Riker, William (1988) [First published in 1982]. Liberalism Against Populism. Prospect Heights, Illinois: Waveland Press. ISBN 978-0-88133-367-1.