Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 1 month ago

Do you think that US elections are better than elections in parliamentary systems, such as Canada and the UK?

I grew up and lived in Canada. Now I live in California, so I’ve experienced both systems

Here in the USA we vote on many things each cycle. We vote for president, our district’s representative, our senators, and many levels of state elections; additionally, in some states such as California we also vote on ballot initiatives and issues. There’s a lot to vote for. Despite the Democrats and Republicans being the two major parties, Americans do have smaller parties and other options as well. When I voted in Canada it was simple: Choose one party. Period. That’s it. There’s usually a choice of 5 or 6 parties, but you simply just vote for one person to represent your riding (district), and that’s it. You don’t vote for the Prime Minister, as the PM is determined by whichever party gets the vote. You don’t vote for senators, as they are appointed by the government in Canada. You certainly don’t vote for ballot initiatives like in California. It would be like Americans voting only in House of Representatives elections, and that outcome also decides the senate and the president. That’s what it’s like in Canada. 

I just feel like the US system has more. We choose our own senators; we vote for the president and our representatives separately. I like it this way. What are your thoughts? 

7 Answers

  • Foofa
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    I prefer the Parliamentary system to what we use here in the US. But California is a bit of an outlier even amongst US states as our ballot initiative and petitioning process is kind of a crazy free-for-all.

  • Clive
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    This is more a question about the governmental system than about elections. The USA has many levels of government so of course you have more elections. What a parliamentary system does is ensure that the government will come from the party with the most seats in the legislature. In the USA, it's possible for the two to be opposed, especially after the mid-term elections. The whole system seems almost designed to prevent anything getting DONE.

    And American presidential election campaigns go on so long that presidents are electioneering half the entire time, so you have to be rich to be president. I fail to see how this is more democratic.

  • Bill
    Lv 6
    1 month ago


    money buys the election and Americans spend zillions to get elected

  • Flower
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    From your description things would be smoother and more would get done if we had the parliamentary system. And we could hold a vote of no confidence and shove the president out any time like a prime minister. Your Canadian or the English system appeals to me. In the U.S. the people dont have much say in national decisions. The local state representatives vote according to who bribes them the most by special interests lobbyists.

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Both systems have good points. In Canada they have more choice in local elections and it costs way less to run.

    In the US we can't get rid of bad presidents. No president has been removed by impeachment, the process is way to restrictive.

    Canada's middle class does better, the healthcare system is better and they don't have the homeless problems the US has.

    In the seven presidential elections since 1992, the Republican candidate has won the popular vote just once but has prevailed in the Electoral College three times. That's not democracy.

    California is not even close to how elections are held in other states. We do get to vote on more things in California. Most states don't allow ballot initiatives.

    We don't really get to vote for presidents in the US, yes their name is on the ballot but the states and political parties have rigged state laws that prevent election of a third party president.

    In most states your vote for president is meaningless.

    The function of the College of Electors in choosing the president can be likened to that in the Roman Catholic Church of the College of Cardinals selecting the Pope. The original idea was for the most knowledgeable and informed individuals from each State to select the president based solely on merit and without regard to State of origin or political party.

    At the time most all voters were illiterate and there was little to no national news, women and blacks could not vote, you were voting for an elector you trusted.

  • 1 month ago

    In the UK we have many layers of elections, there's the parliamentary elections, council elections and European elections. The last 2 have traditionally low turn outs, far more people vote in the general election. I think it's because people get weary of elections piled on to each other. General elections normally only have a few weeks run while in the US it seems to be a 2 year run up, which sounds exhausting to us, how does anyone get time to govern if they are always in electioneering mode? Maybe that's the idea.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    The US system is better. We have more checks and balances in the government, and as you mentioned, we have more choice. We vote for multiple levels of government at the same time. In Canada, the people don’t choose their leader directly. They choose their party, and the party chooses its leader. Whereas in the USA, people choose both. As you also mentioned, Canadians don’t choose their senators. They’re appointed. 

    Finally, Americans also vote in primary elections to decide the party leaders each cycle. The nominee. Canadians don’t do this. The parties decide on their own, or, in some provinces & some parties the people can BUY a party membership and have some say in that. Still, it isn’t like the US system where we have a 50-state election to decide the candidate for each party, and then get to have the general election. 

    Canada has some benefits though. It’s easier to register to vote there compared to SOME US states. Overall I like the American system far more. 

    Also, Canadians can have the same issue that Americans have with the electoral college. One candidate wins more votes while another gets more seats/districts. That’s possible in Canada as well. 

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