Beyond the Stars
The Galactic Federation is the dominant political body in the explored galaxy. A cosmopolitan body consisting of species from many different worlds, the Federation is designed to bring stability and representation of the needs of all beings to the galaxy.
The Federation is a representative democracy in terms of its political makeup, but it is so much more than that. It is the single most powerful cultural force in the galaxy, responsible for galaxy unity and relative peace. Federation currency is the backbone of commerce. Federation law is the backbone of justice and civil rights. Galactic law enforcement ensures that criminals are not able to claim amnesty by planet-hopping. It is the one thing that all beings, regardless of species, have in common. The fact that it has managed to work, albeit with occasional hiccups, for so many years is the basis of its legitimacy.
The Galactic Federation does not claim the entire galaxy. Even in the known galaxy, which makes up only a small percentage of the galaxy, the Federation does not have total sway. Newly pioneered systems are considered to be “free space”. If systems are not part of a formal Federation colonization effort, they can evolve their own government. However, the massive machine of the Federation allows it to place inexorable pressure on most developed systems to eventually accept membership into the Federation.