Tuesday, 16 December 2008

I'm confused dot com

Seriously, I am. I'm confused. Today, I learnt that in America a state governor can appoint someone to a senate seat if it is vacant and there isn't an election due.

Can someone please explain this to me as I was under the impression that America was a democracy.

I'm talking, of course, about the seat in Illinois that has been made vacant by Obama's election as President and the 'shocking' news that the governor has been accused of trying to sell the set to the highest bidder. Now, regardless of if he if guilty or not, what I don't understand is why he has the power to appoint someone to the seat in the first place.

You see, in the UK, when a seat in any elected body, be it Parliament, the county council or the committee of the local allotment association, is made vacant for whatever reason be it resignation, death or any other reason (such as when George Robertson was made a Baron and appointed secretary-general of NATO) then we hold a by-election - a one off election to ensure someone fills the seat until the next scheduled election.

So why isn't that happening in the US?

Seriously, can someone explain it to me because I don't understand.

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