Talk:Balance of power (parliament)

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Inappropriate use of 'globalise' template[edit]

The placement of this template under a heading which explicitly deals with one country seems to me to be just plain silly. Unless someone else acts first, I intend to lift it after a few days if there is no intelligible justification. Cheers Bjenks (talk) 05:03, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

The problem I see is that the UK material is in the wrong article. The article's meant to explain the meaning BOP, but instead has a series of longwinded examples which are irrelevant to anyone not interested in UK political history, and so detract from the article. By all means put it in an article called something like "UK Minority governments", but it's out of place here. p.s. it wasn't me who put the template in. Peter Ballard (talk) 05:20, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
I have to agree, and will look at this again later. Bjenks (talk) 06:02, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
The article has some (limited) discussion regarding the Australian Senate, so I have added a heading for this. This section could expanded slightly for reference to the House of Representatives at federal level and houses at state/territory level.
As for the UK, I have renamed the heading to make it clear that the section deals exclusively with the UK. If someone has a better article for this to go into, feel free to relocate it.
Perhaps more content should be added regarding other countries? sroc (talk) 09:40, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

Either include more countries in the examples (such as Canada, which is not only the largest Commonwealth country, but is a PERFECT example for this article), or otherwise delete the examples section. Why are we only concentrating on U.K/Austr. only?[edit]

What about Canada ?!!!?!

Why are the examples in this article of the UK and Australia only?!

Canada, the largest of the Commonwealth countries has MANY excellent examples for "balance of power", especially considering the string of minority governments recently AND in its history. The NDP (New Democratic Party of Canada) usually ends up holding the balance of power in a minority parliament, and if the minority governing party is the Liberal Party (which, in Canada's history, it usually IS, either in a minority or majority), then this usually results in a beautiful cooperation to bring in very progressive centre-left policies (hence why Canada is not a conservative country).

Although most of our progressive economic and social policies were enacted by the Liberal Party, MANY of them were during minority governments, and it was the NDP who introduced them and informed them that their continued support would require the implementation of those policies; and since the Liberals are progressive anyway, they usually (almost always) happily agree and work together.

And, since Canada's existence has been governed almost 75% by the Liberal Party (majorities AND minorities), a minority gov't is always indicative that there will be a progressive approach to everything due to the NDP holding the balance of power.

Unfortunately, the Conservatives (Tories) are usually in opposition to these policies and rarely agree to such cooperation. Luckily, though, Canada's population is about 75% left-of-centre, so we don't get many Tory governments because the majority of the voters support a centre-left party (Liberal, NDP, Green or Bloc Quebecois), and Tory governments (especially majorities) are usually short-lived anyway, because after they start pushing their right-wing agenda through, Canadians immediately throw them out.

If you're going to give examples in this article, then it should include countries such as Canada because of its significance and size. Otherwise, then there shouldn't be ANY country-specific examples.

So, we should either include Canada and other countries, or not include ANY countries at all. It makes no sense to focus solely on the U.K and Australia. (talk) 01:16, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for your suggestion. When you believe an article needs improvement, please feel free to make those changes. Wikipedia is a wiki, so anyone can edit almost any article by simply following the edit this page link at the top.
The Wikipedia community encourages you to be bold in updating pages. Don't worry too much about making honest mistakes—they're likely to be found and corrected quickly. If you're not sure how editing works, check out how to edit a page, or use the sandbox to try out your editing skills. New contributors are always welcome. You don't even need to log in (although there are many reasons why you might want to). Timeshift (talk) 06:00, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

While I agree that more parties should be represented I feel that just adding more commonwealth nations would do the reader an disservice as many of the best examples of how balance of power can actually play a huge role in politics is found in systems not used in the commonwealth nations, like Germany, Norway, the Neatherlands and so one and so forth. I've written more about that further down in this talk page. Luredreier (talk) 10:35, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

This article is an absolute, unmitigated mess[edit]

There's so much wrong with it that its hard to know where to begin. I don't know very much about British politics, but the Australian and U.S sections are quite terrible.

Australia: This section doesn't list any examples like the others do, nor does it precisely define the use and operation of the term "balance of power". And then the section ends with this: "If no party holds a majority of seats in the lower house, it is necessary to form a coalition with other members of parliament in order to form a stable government, rather than rely on the support of crossbenchers who hold the balance of power." Not only is this pure opinion, its the most ludicrous opinion I've ever heard. Why in God's name is it necessary to form a coalition rather than rely on the support of crossbenchers, especially since that is exactly what happened after our last hung parliament a mere five years ago?

United Kingdom: The section contains this: "Conservative 306, Labour 258, Liberal Democrats 57, Others 29. Total seats 650. This election led to David Cameron's Conservative Party being the largest party with no majority. However no two parties (other than Conservative and Labour) could jointly provide a majority in the House of Commons." Now, I may not know much about British politics, but I do know how to count, and 306 conservatives + 57 liberal democrats = 363, which is well over a majority of 650.

United States: This section makes repeated references to "minority governments" and "coalitions". Unless I am missing something, I don't see how the concept of a minority government can make any sense in the united states, which doesn't have a parliamentary system. It seems that "minority government" is being used as something akin to "voting alliance" or "voting bloc", but interchanging minority government for voting bloc is so bizzare that I'm not even sure if that's the case. Moreover, I can't even see how the concept of "balance of power" is very meaningful to the U.S, given that party allegiances don't seem to mean very much in that country. How can one party hold the balance of power if voting alliances change on every piece of legislation?

I am reluctant to remove some of the sentences mentioned above since they seem so bizzare that I feel I may have misinterpreted what they're trying to say. However if no one can make sense of it all, I propose removing the whole U.S section, rewriting the Australian section so it follows the form of the others, and removing the part about no two parties other than conservative and labour having a majority after the U.K election. Colonial Overlord (talk) 12:23, 2 January 2015 (UTC)

May I suggest adding some Non-commonwealth countries?[edit]

The problem with countries like the UK and US is that they use variations of the first pass the post. And therefore balance of power doesn't usually play as much of a role there as in other countries like my own, Norway. And presumably this article is here to explain to the reader what the principle is all about. I would therefore suggest that you add a few countries where balance of power actually plays a bigger role. Germany is one, but Norway is probably one of the better examples there is out there although there's probably many other minor nations with good examples. The reason why I'd like to use Norway as an example is due to the presense of what's essentially 3 blocks in some elections. The regular left and right of course, but also a center who have their own ideological fundation different from the other two not just in being in the middle economically but actually by being on the sides on different political axis. This resulted in things like a party from the political center actually getting the prime minister from 1997 too 2000 and from 2001 to 2005.,_1997,_2001

And the current cabinet is a minority goverment that could lose power at any time if they lose the support of the political center who holds the balance of power between the left wing and right wing blocks. Of course the in the latest election the center wasn't united like it has often been historically, so there's 2 parties from the center supporting each block this time (something that's often not the case) in Norway. So in essence more then one political party can hold the balance of power together between groups of parties that have their own blocks.

Something similar from a few other countries would also do wonders for the article I think. As well as just talk about the principle in general without examples. Luredreier (talk) 10:27, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

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