A democratic society can be conceived as an ongoing order characterized by a certain principle of justification -- a principle of democratic legitimacy. This principle requires a continuous order of mutually assured and encouraged autonomy in which political decisions are manifestly based on the judgments of members who are free and equal persons. It requires that the expression of self-governing capacities operate both within the formal institutions of politics and in the affairs of daily life. The democratic order must also satisfy the conditions of equal freedom and autonomy that give it definition.