Igualdad política: implicancias para el diseño institucional y los derechos fundamentales

This paper explores the relationship between political equality and other types of equality, as well as its implications on the design of key public institutions and fundamental rights. In particular, it evaluates the configuration of civil and political rights (freedoms of expression, assembly and association), and certain political institutions. The paper concludes that Chilean constitution double structure -elitist democracy on the one hand, and neoliberal civil society, on the other-, does not promote voting equality, effective political participation and control of the political agenda, which are Robert Dahl’s conditions for a full democracy. In other words, it is worth asking, in this context, whether citizens have the discursive means and the participation channels to effectively carry out the making of collective decisions. Restated, given the conditions stated above, can the people be considered as “free and equal” in political matters?