This is the list of decisions Swiss voters made in the past few years, decisions that the Swiss politicians, not only they can not overturn them, they have to comply with the decisions of the people.
To give you an idea of the power of Swiss voters, and with the hope to trigger in others the desire to follow, or even improve the Swiss system, here you have the decisions the Swiss people made that the politicians had to implement and that even the Swiss Supreme Court can not overturn.
In Switzerland, being a real democracy, they have the common sense to realise that no judicial authority can prevail over the people because their interpretation of the constitution tells the judges that the people are wrong.
To the Swiss, that the judges can prevail over the political will of the people is absurd. The Swiss people themselves make the Swiss Constitution as they act. There is a famous song in Spanish that says; “walker, there is no trail, you make the trail as you walk”.
The Swiss do the same with the Constitution; “we build and develop the constitution as we vote, and we decide on what to vote, and when”.
In Switzerland, the politicians can not call referendums, plebiscites or anything like that, only the people can.
In Switzerland, the people can challenge any law and throw away any law the politicians propose.
This what the Swiss people have started referendums and decide the results all by themselves in 2020 and 2021 alone.
On Feb. 9th 2020 they organised the vote, voted and decided on the following issues:
- Affordable housing.
- Decision to decide if legislation on sexual orientation would be maintained or thrown away.
May 17th, 2020 referendums (which were postponed because of the Chinese variant of Covid.
- Moderation of immigration.
- Law on hunting.
- Amendment to the tax law regarding deduction of child care expenses.
- Decision on whether the Swiss Air Force should have more fighter jets.
- Decision on the paternity leave law.
November 29th, 2020 referendums
- On the penalization in Switzerland if a Swiss company, or its foreign subsidiary, violates human rights laws and environmental laws.
- Decision on proposal to ban financing of Swiss arms manufacturers.
March 7th, 2021 referendums
- Decision to ban facial covering in public.
- Decision on the Federal Law on electronic identification services.
- Decision on a trade treaty with Indonesia; yes the Swiss people decide treaties.
June 13th, 202 referendums
- Decision on the constitutionality of the law enacted to deal with COVID.
- Decision on the validity of the law enacted to deal with police measures to prevent terrorism.
- Decision on the validity of the law enacted to reduce greenhouse gases emissions.
- Decision on the use of synthetic pesticides in Switzerland.
- Decision on financial assistance to farmers whose activities are harming the environment.
In September the Swiss will vote on other issues to decide, not so that the politicians know what the people think, in Switzerland all referendums are binding for politicians.
The really important thing is not how the referendum results turn out, the important thing is that the people decide the key issues.
Remember, Switzerland is the best governed country in the World; not only it is a democracy, it is a direct democracy.
Perhaps one of the biggest strengths of popular referendums, if planned and delivered in a open, mature, calm manners, is that the decision reflects the thinking of the majority of the people. The system allows Switzerland to use the brains of all Swiss voters. It is only natural that together, they will arrive at better decisions than a few politicians.
If the people of your country participate in referendums, as well organised, debated and delivered as Switzerland, your country will be better governed.
But don’t wait for most politicians to switch towards direct democracy; they will never do it because, to put bluntly, direct democracy means the people have more power than the elected representatives.
So, don’t wait for others to deliver direct democracy to your country; you will have to demand it.
If you think the people of your should have the last say on any issue, the people want to decide upon, then you want direct democracy. If you do not want direct democracy, it means you need to inform yourself better and learn the details explaining its superiority.
If the people let the elected politicians make all key decisions, in free countries it makes no sense for the people to blame and complain about the politicians; the people, with their passive, non-assertive behaviour, are responsible for the situation.