The five different kinds of sovereignty are as follows: (1) Nominal arid Real Sovereignty (2) Legal Sovereignty (3) Political Sovereignty (4) Popular Sovereignty (5) Deo Facto and De Jure Sovereignty.
(1) Nominal arid Real Sovereignty:
In ancient times many states had monarchies and their rulers were monarchs. They wielded absolute power and their senates and parliaments were quite powerless. At that time they exercised real sovereignty. Therefore, they are regarded as real sovereigns. For example, Kings were sovereigns and hence they were all powerful in England before fifteenth century, in U.S.S.R. before eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and in France before 1789. The state of affairs changed in England after the Glorious Revolution in 1688.
Now the King is like a rubber- stamp. The British king has a right to encourage, warn and advise his Ministers or seek any information about the administration. Except these ordinary powers, all other powers of the British king are wielded by his Ministers.
Lowell has summed up the position of the British Sovereign in these words: “According to the early history of the constitution, the ministers were the counsellors of the king. It was for them to advise and for him to decide. Now the parts are almost reversed. The king is consulted but the ministers decide”.
(2) Legal Sovereignty:
Legal sovereignty is that authority of the state which has the legal power to issue final commands. It is the authority of the state to whose directions the law of the State attributes final legal force. In every independent and ordered state there are some laws which must be obeyed by the people and there must be a power to issue and enforce these laws. The power which has the legal authority to issue and enforce these laws’ is legal sovereignty.
In England, the King-in-Parliament is sovereign. According to Dicey, “The British Parliament is so omnipotent legally speaking…. that it can adjudge an infant of full age, it may attain a man of treason after death; it may legitimize an illegitimate child or if it sees fit, make a man a judge in his own case”.
The authority of the legal sovereign is absolute and law is simply the will of the sovereign. Since the authority of the sovereign is unrestrained, reserves the legal right to do whatever he desires. It is the legal sovereign who grants and enforces all the rights enjoyed by the citizens and, therefore, there cannot be any right against him. The legal sovereign is, thus, always definite and determinate.
Only the legal sovereign has the power to declare in legal terms the will of the stale. The authority of the sovereign is absolute and supreme. This authority may reside either in the monarch or in an absolute monarchy or it may reside in the body of persons.
(3) Political Sovereignty:
Dicey believes that “behind the sovereign which the lawyer recognises, there is another sovereign to whom the legal sovereign must bow. Such sovereign to whom the legal sovereign must bow is called political sovereign. In every Ordered state the legal sovereign has to pay due attention to the political sovereign.
According to Professor Gilchrist, “The political sovereign means the sum-total of influences in a State which lie behind the law. In modern representative government we might define it roughly as the power of the people”. In other words by political sovereign in the representative democracies, we mean the whole mass of the people or the electorate or the public opinion. But at the same time, it cannot be emphatically asserted that political sovereignty can definitely be identified with the whole mass of the people, the electorate or the public opinion. Political sovereignty is a vague and indeterminate term.
Political sovereignty rests in that class of people under whose influence the mass of the people is or the people are. Political sovereignty rests in the electorate, in the public opinion and in all other influences in the state which mould and shape the public opinion.
In the words of Professor R.N. Gilchrist, “Political sovereign manifests itself by voting, by the press, by speeches, and in many other ways not easy to describe or define. It is, however, not organised and it can becom6 effective only when organised. But the organisations of political sovereignty lead to legal sovereignty. The two are aspects of the one sovereignty of the state”. As a matter of fact, legal and political sovereignty are the two aspects of the one sovereignty of the state. But at the same time both the aspects stands poles apart.
Legal sovereign is a law-making authority in legal terms, whereas political sovereignty is behind the legal sovereign. The legal sovereign can express his will in legal terms. But the political sovereign cannot do so. Legal sovereign is determinate, definite and visible whereas political sovereign is not determinate and clear.
It is recognised. Legal sovereignty is vested in the electorate, public opinion and other influences of the state which mould or shape the public opinion. Legal sovereign is recognised by lawyers while political sovereign is not.
Legal sovereign cannot go against the will of the political sovereign whereas political sovereign, though not legally powerful, controls over the legal sovereign. The concept of legal sovereign is clear whereas the concept of political sovereign is vague. Legal sovereign is elected by the political sovereign whereas political sovereign is the electorate or the people. These are the points of difference between the legal sovereign and the political sovereign.
(4) Popular Sovereignty:
Popular sovereignty roughly means the power of the masses as contrasted with the Power of the individual ruler of the class. It implies manhood, suffrage, with each individual having only one vote and the control of the legislature by the representatives of the people. In popular sovereignty public is regarded as supreme. In the ancient times many writers on Political Science used popular sovereignty as a weapon to refute absolutism of the monarchs.
According to Dr. Garner, “Sovereignty of the people, therefore, can mean nothing more than the power of the majority of the electorate, in a country where a system of approximate universal suffrage prevails, acting through legally established channels to express their will and make it prevail”.