In Economist Rankings, US Barely Makes List Of Functioning Democracies

Screengrab/Guardian News/YouTube

The U.S. was downgraded last year from a ‘full democracy’ to a ‘flawed democracy’.

The Economist Intelligence Unit rolled out its 2017 Democracy Index on Wednesday, and like last year, the United States fails to reach the category of 'full democracy'. In fact, this time the U.S. barely made the list of the world's best democracies.

The study has five criteria: Whether elections are free and fair ("electoral process and pluralism"), governments have checks and balances ("functioning of government"), and whether citizens are included in politics ("political participation"), support their government ("political culture"), and enjoy freedom of expression ("civil liberties").

The study ranks countries according to a 10 point scale, with only nations scoring an 8 or higher considered 'full democracies'. Last year the U.S. was downgraded from 'full' to 'flawed' due to the "low esteem in which US voters hold their government, elected representatives, and political parties" .

The Economist Intelligence Unit provided the following rankings for 2017:

  1. Norway - 9.87/10
  2. Iceland - 9.58
  3. Sweden - 9.39
  4. New Zealand - 9.26
  5. Denmark - 9.22
  6. Republic of Ireland - 9.15 / Canada 9.15
  7. Australia - 9.09
  8. Finland - 9.03 / Switzerland - 9.03
  9. The Netherlands - 8.89
  10. Luxembourg - 8.81
  11. Germany - 8.61
  12. United Kingdom - 8.53
  13. Austria - 8.42
  14. Mauritius - 8.22
  15. Malta - 8.15
  16. Uruguay - 8.12
  17. Spain - 8.08
  18. South Korea - 8.00
  19. United States - 7.98 / Italy 7.98
Comments

Stories