Democracy and the Republic are two governance models that are accepted by most countries of the world. However, not only these two models are different from each other, but the government of either is also formed otherwise.
Foremost, it is necessary to give a definition to both forms of government and provide some examples of existing political systems. Democracy is a form of government in which the people have the authority to choose their governing legislation. Republic is a form of government in which representatives of the citizen body rule a state.
The term republic may also be applied to any type of government in which the head of state is not a hereditary monarch. The main difference is that the republic vests representatives with legal authority, while minority rights are retained. That is, the powers of representatives are specially appointed and limited. Democracy is strict observance of the majority will, while the minority has only those rights that are allowed.
For instance, an electoral college forms a republican-type voting system. Strict democracy imposes the total number of votes throughout the United States. Nevertheless, the winner receives the entire system in individual states. It is considered to be a democratic type of voting system since the minority does not receive a single vote of the electoral college.
Another example is a parliamentary type system, as in Britain. Each party gets an appropriate percentage of seats in parliament. In a pure democracy, all places will belong to the majority. Kant legibly distinguished between democracy (despotism) and the republic. According to Kant, the Republic is positioned as a system established following the principles of freedom of society members, while democracy comes into conflict with this freedom.
The most common form of government in the modern world is the republic. The source of power is the people; citizens elect the highest authorities. Depending on who forms the government, to whom it is accountable and controlled, the republics are divided into three varieties: parliamentary, presidential, and mixed (semi-presidential).
Juan J. Linz outlined the main features for the presidential and parliamentary republics. The presidential system is characterized by the President acts without the need for the Parliament approval, the President possesses without the need for the Parliament approval, the President can be removed by impeachment.
To a greater extent, the parliamentary model of political democracy is in the public interest. The vast majority of the world’s stable democratic regimes are parliamentary systems. The only presidential democracy with a long history of constitutional continuity is the United States of America, as well as France and Finland, which are not pure presidential systems.
For the presidential system, it may be dangerous to have confidence in the people’s support and, accordingly, in having power when the President represents the interests of a small number of political parties. The danger of presidential elections on the principle of – the winner gets everything – is exacerbated by the strict presidential term. This circumstance raises the stakes high when choosing a president and inevitably leads to an aggravation of relations in society and its further polarization.
On the other hand, the presidential election allows people to openly and directly elect the head of the executive branch for a precise term. However, this decisive moment will begin to work only when the presidential mandate is received with a vast majority of votes. In concluding, the main difference between democracy and the republic is the restrictions for the government established by law, which is vital for minority rights.