Mandate

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In politics, a mandate is the authority granted by a constituency to act as its representative.

The concept of a government having a legitimate mandate to govern via the fair winning of a democratic election is a central idea of democracy. New governments who attempt to introduce policies that they did not make public during an election campaign are said to not have a legitimate mandate to implement such policies.

Elections, especially ones with a large margin of victory, are often said to give the newly elected government or elected official a mandate to implement certain policies. Also, the period a government serves between elections is often referred to as a mandate and when the government seeks re-election it is said to be seeking a "new mandate".