Around the world, democracies are suffering from voter apathy, political polarization, anti-establishment sentiment and abuses of majoritarian rule that have facilitated the spread of autocracy. Now countries are increasingly experimenting with a new way forward: citizens’ assemblies put together by random selection.
Tunisian opposition leader Rached Ghannouchi was arrested last week and remains in detention, as part of an ongoing crackdown against critics of President Kais Saied. Ghannouchi’s arrest and Saied’s clampdown on political freedoms have major implications for Tunisia’s domestic affairs as well as its foreign relations.
With everything that happened last week, one could easily have missed what is nevertheless an ostensibly central pillar of President Joe Biden’s foreign policy: the second Summit for Democracy. Some critics say the summit risks becoming an “inconsequential talk shop.” In fact, it has already crossed that line.