Sortition gets some attention from the political left

Submitted by webmaster on Tue, 20-09-2022 - 18:56

The member-based social-liberal public broadcasting organisation VPRO occasionally pays attention to sortition - on TV or on its website, like on this page, where four cases are presented where citizens drawn by lot have real influence: Porto Alegre, Belgium, Ireland and France. On TV, professor of public administration Mark Bovens commented on the problematic difference between the composition of the Dutch House of Representatives and the composition of the general population, pointing out that the House is composed mainly of highly-educated politicians who usually take decisions in favor of the highly educated in the general population. The VPRO Tegenlicht tweet referring to this fragment, summarized it like this: 'The Netherlands a democracy? In The Hague those of higher education are in charge'.

On the left-wing discussion forum, political geographer and researcher at the Transnational Institute Lavinia Steinfort advocated sortition in the article 'Beyond elections: Democratic innovation as the answer to right-wing extremism'.

The Wiardi Beckman Stichting, a Dutch think tank linked to the left-of-centre Labour Party (PvdA), published an article on its website written by Matthijs van Muijen: Lessons of the French Climate Convention, pointing out its weaknesses and strengths.

On september 5th, 2021, eight candidates contesting the left-of-centre Labour Party (PvdA) chairmanship had an online conversation where they presented themselves to party members. Pieter Paul Slikker was the only candidate advocating citizens' assemblies, stating that his party completely failed to address democratization. Mr. Slikker was not elected chairman.