How does the political system work in Switzerland?

How does the political system work in Switzerland?
Understanding the Swiss political system

Although Switzerland is known as a direct democracy, its political system and frequent referendums remain a great mystery to most foreigners, if not an anomaly. 

Swiss confederation
Although CH, meaning Swiss Confederation, is the country's international code, Switzerland has been a federal state rather than a confederation since 1848.

What is federalism in Switzerland, and what is it for?

Switzerland is a federal state, which means that power is not centralised, but divided between the municipalities, cantons and the confederation. People have a direct influence.

This sharing makes it possible to unify and ensure the coexistence of linguistic, religious and territorial diversities and minorities. Switzerland is therefore a nation based on mutual consent and the fundamental principle of the separation of powers.

Swiss political balance

What is direct democracy in Switzerland?

Direct democracy, unique to the Swiss, allows the people to participate in political decisions at the federal and cantonal levels. Its main « cornerstones » are the citizen's initiative allowing a revision of the Constitution and the referendum that allows a decision to be made on certain laws adopted by Parliament.

Swiss people
Swiss cantons

Who does what?

Swiss powers
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