Principles of Liberal Democracy

Principles of Liberal Democracy

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Liberal democracy is a doctrine that emphasizes the freedom of individuals. It also provides individual economic freedom. By the rule of law, it limits the power of government. It ensures the rights of the minorities and believes in secularism. Liberal democracy is the most standard form of democracy without liberalism democracy can be distracted.


Liberal democracy is a form of government. It is a representative democracy in which the ability
of the elected representatives to exercise decision-making power is subject to the rule of law and
usually moderated by a constitution that emphasizes the protection of the rights and freedoms of
individuals, and which places constraints on the leaders and on the extent to which the will of the
majority can be exercised against the rights of minorities liberal democracy traces its origins – and
its name – to the European 18th century, also known as the Age of Enlightenment. Liberalism
derived from two related features of western culture. One is the western preoccupation with
individuality. The individual has been submerged and subordinate to his tribe, clan. group ethnic
or kingdom. Another derives from the practice of versatility in European political and economic
life. A process in which institutionalized competition. For example competition between political
parties or between different producers in a market economy.

Analysis of Key Principles of Liberal Democracy

  • Separation of powers: Separation of powers refers to the division of powers into distinct branches
    of government such as the legislative, the executive, the judiciary each with their own
    responsibilities. The intent of separation of powers is to prevent the concentration of unchecked power and to provide for checks and balances, in which the powers of one branch of government
    are limited by the powers of another branch—to prevent abuses of power and avoid autocracy. The
    most well-known example of separation of powers is the tripartite system found in the United
    States in which each branch of government has distinct powers.
  • Periodic elections: Another key feature of liberal democracy is periodic elections. By regular free
    and fair elections, government becomes more attentive about the popular mandate. People also get
    a chance to be involved with politics and they get the freedom of expression through periodic elections.
  • Rights: In a liberal democracy, the state will protect the individual freedom and rights of minorities.
    The state may not encroach on the rights of a person. There should be a free press, free speech, and a
    written Bill of rights that prioritizes the rights of the individual. A central aim of liberal democracy
    as a system is that it tries to limit the power of the main branches of government over the individual.
  • Economic Foundation: Liberal Democracy is established on laissez-faire policy, which means
    the government will not interfere in the market, it allows free market. Here government will allow people
    to own property and business. People can choose their professions and can join labor Unions. In
    a liberal democracy, people get economic freedom.


From the above discussion, we can see that democracy with liberalism is more fruitful. For the rule
of law, the government has to provide and protect the rights of an individual. As a result, liberal
democracy privileges the interest of the individual over the community. Without liberalism, a
democratic government can turn into an autocracy.

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