National Discussion

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

National Discussion


in socialist states one of the manifestations of direct democracy; in particular, a form of participation by citizens in creating laws.

As distinct from a national referendum, a national discussion is not a form of ratifying a law or deciding a problem, but rather has a consultative character. The remarks, desires, and suggestions concerning a published legislative bill, as expressed by citizens during the course of a national discussion, are taken into consideration by the legislative organs for the purpose of improving the legislation. In the USSR the practice of conducting national discussions is being developed more and more as one of the ways of improving socialist democracy and of drawing Soviet citizens into the law-making activity of the state.

A widespread national discussion was carried out in the USSR, for example, in 1956 over bills on the state pension, in 1968 on the draft of the Principles of Land Legislation, and in 1970 on the draft of the Principles of Water Legislation.


Kotok, V. F. Referendum v sisteme sotsialisticheskoi demokratii. Moscow, 1964.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
And yet, however just these sentiments will be allowed to be, we have already sufficient indications that it will happen in this as in all former cases of great national discussion. A torrent of angry and malignant passions will be let loose.
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The President urged the Commission to play a more visible role in leading national discussion on South Africa's long-term development and providing clear positions on key issues in society.
He added: "We're a learning organization, and we'll work to understand the many important issues arising from El Paso and Southaven as well as those raised in the broader national discussion around gun violence.
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What makes this an important matter, which should call for a national discussion, is the fact that the Electoral College for the primary was composed of party executives, from the grassroots to the national level.

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