Journal of Political Philosophy 11 (1):23–40 (2003)

Simon Wigley
Bilkent University
A recurring question within contemporary democratic countries relates to whether parliamentary immunity only serves to protect the interests of representatives, rather than the interests of those they were elected to represent. With every act that is suspected of being corrupt (for example, accepting a bribe in return for asking a question or delivering a speech in parliament, failure to declare campaign contributions, insider trading, nepotism etc.), or otherwise illegal (for example, defamation, drunk driving etc.), that is left unexamined by the courts, the justifiability of parliamentary immunity is brought into question. The problem posed by parliamentary immunity is that it affords each representative greater scope to pursue their own personal and political interests, over and above that which is made possible simply by their position of influence. As citizens it is this undemocratic possibility that might incline us to wish for the immunity to be curtailed. The political pressure to circumscribe the immunity is given added impetus by the prevailing public perception that political corruption is widespread.1 Indeed it is increasingly evident that a growing number of countries have either already reduced the scope of parliamentary immunity or are considering doing so.2 The principal rationale behind this trend is that the only telling way to prevent the decision-making..
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DOI 10.1111/1467-9760.00165
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Delibration and Democratic Legitimacy.Joshua Cohen - 1989 - In Derek Matravers & Jonathan E. Pike (eds.), Debates in Contemporary Political Philosophy: An Anthology. Routledge, in Association with the Open University.
Judicial Review and the Conditions of Democracy.J. Waldron - 1998 - Journal of Political Philosophy 6 (4):335–355.

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