The Pledge of Allegiance includes
the phrase: "and to the republic for which it stands."
Is the United States of America a republic? I always thought it was a democracy?
What's the difference between the two?
The United States is, indeed, a republic, not a democracy.
Accurately defined, a democracy is a form of government in which the people decide policy
matters directly--through town hall meetings or by voting on ballot initiatives and referendums.
A republic, on the other hand, is a system in which the people choose representatives who, in turn, make policy decisions on their behalf.
Constitution does not provide for national ballot initiatives or referendums is indicative of the Framers' opposition to such mechanisms.
They were not confident that the people had the time, wisdom or level-headedness to make complex decisions, such as those that are often presented on ballots on election day.