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Gerald F. Gaus

This essay analyses optimal voting rules for one form of deliberative democracy. Drawing on public choice analysis, it is argued that (i) the voting rule that best institutionalises deliberative democracy is a type of a supermajority rule. Deliberative democracy is also committed to (ii) the standard neutrality condition according to which if x votes are enough to select alternative A, x votes must be enough to select not-A. Taken together, these imply that deliberative democracy will often be indeterminate. This result shows that deliberative democracy is ill-equipped to provide guidance as to how actual political disputes are to be legitimately resolved.

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Angelika von Wahl

For decades conservative welfare states have reformed reluctantly. To understand recent family policy reforms in Germany we must add institutions and economics to any account of politics. This article focuses on the grand coalition of CDU/CSU and SPD formed after the 2005 Bundestag election. Two opposed assumptions pertain to grand coalitions: one holds that a coalition of parties with different ideologies will act according to the lowest common denominator resulting in policy inertia. The opposite holds that grand coalitions enable policy change because constraints are removed by the supermajority. This article develops five conditions for successful reform, arguing that traditional family policies directed at the protection of motherhood are shifting towards reconciliation policies that emphasize labor market activation and increased birth rates. The shift indicates 1) that even conservative states have the potential for bounded reform; and, 2) that agency—particularly partisan and coalitional interests—needs to be considered more seriously.

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Werner Reutter

parliament) have a say in the elections. More tangibly, justices of constitutional courts have to be elected with a “supermajority” of at least two-thirds of the members of parliament. Such a majority would grant the minority an institutionalized influence

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The racial fix

White currency in the gentrification of black and Latino Chicago

Jesse Mumm

only secondarily appeared to be about race because the new gentry were supermajority white. How do we disentangle the connection between people with more wealth improving the material conditions of the built environment, and an artificial hike in

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Spencer McKay

government (national and/or subnational). The relative ease of approval is measured by the surface of the polygon determined by: a) the participation quorum, b) the approval quorum, and c) supermajority requirements. The resulting score is then multiplied by

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Incipient “commoning” in defense of the public?

Competing varieties of fiscal citizenship in tax- and spending-related direct democracy

Sandra Morgen and Jennifer Erickson

supermajority (three-fifths majority) in the legislature to pass revenue-raising bills (Measure 25, 1996). His next big victory was Measure 47 (1996), a new property tax limitation that also included a provision that revenue-raising ballot measures must win by a

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What’s a Political Theorist to Do?

Rawls, the Fair Value of the Basic Political Liberties, and the Collapse of the Distinction Between ‘Ideal’ and ‘Nonideal’ Theory

Susan Orr and James Johnson

.001.0001 Schwartzberg , M. 2007 . Democracy and Legal Change . Cambridge : Cambridge University Press . 10.1017/CBO9780511509681 Schwartzberg , M. 2013 . Counting the Many: The Origins and Limits of Supermajority Rule . Cambridge : Cambridge University

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Dividing Worlds

Tsunamis, Seawalls, and Ontological Politics in Northeast Japan

Andrew Littlejohn

far wall. Thirty-six of the 45 displaced households had responded: a super-majority (67 percent) had rejected the planned seawall height, although none had chosen no wall at all. Most desired a wall that was 4 meters or lower; the most popular option

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Using International Criminal Law to Resist Transitional Justice

Legal Rupture in the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia

Mikael Baaz and Mona Lilja

Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia are, as the name indicates, special chambers within the Cambodian court system. Within the court Cambodians have a majority but with “supermajority” provision ( Ciorciari 2009: 67–72 ). In practice, this means