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CHRISTIAN DEMOCRACY CAN be defined as a political philosophy, founded on Christian principles that inspire movements and political parties. Although Christian Democracy is a worldwide movement, it is in Europe that the philosophy has been the most successful: Christian Democratic parties have frequently been in power in five major European countries (Austria, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands and, until recently, Italy), while the European Popular party (the European federation of Christian Democratic parties) dominates the European parliament together with the socialists.

Usually described as a pragmatic and opportunistic catch-all party, ideologically located between liberalism and collectivism, Christian Democracy is instead characterized by peculiar elements that define its distinctiveness from other political ideologies. The most distinctive feature of Christian Democracy is its endless tension toward integration, compromise, accommodation, and ...

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