The president of Iran holds the supreme power in administrative matters, he/she cannot function against the interests of the religious leaders. In other words, religion holds the supreme power in Iranian political and social life.
Over the past few years, Iran and America are catching the headlines of the newspapers because of their clashes over the issue of nuclear power development by Iran. America suspects that Iran is trying to make nuclear arsenal to use against America and Israel like countries even though Iran’s declared aim was to use the nuclear energy for solving their energy crisis.
The government refers to a particular set of institutions and people authorized by formal documents such as a constitution to pass laws, issue regulations, control the police and so on. The sate is a broader concept that includes all the institutions and individuals that exercise power (Hauss, p.8).
In Iran’s case the institutions like the religion seem to be an upper hand in politics whereas, in America’s cases, individuals seem to have more power than the institutions. Former American president Abraham Lincoln defined democracy as an institution of the people, for the people and by the people. The above definition of democracy needs to be changed in Iran’s case. In Iran, democracy functions with the help of the religion, by the religion and for the religion. In short, even though democratic governments are functioning in these two extremely diverse countries, America seems to be having upper hand in functioning in the true spirits of a democratic government.
Religion does not play any role in the functioning of democracy in America.