Rawlsian approaches to public reason assume a shared notion reasoning qua citizen for participants in public justification. I argue that while we can all reason as citizens, there will not be a shared conception of a citizen in large polities. This stems from the large differences in our local environments that will give rise to different civic conceptions, civic virtues, and civic relations. Rawlsian public reason glosses over these distinctions with its citizen idealization and, in doing so, hides important sources of political disagreement and potentially tips the scales of Rawlsian public reason in favor of basic structures that better match the non-neutral idealization. This gives us reason to question Rawlsian public reason as a method of political justification and seek out alternatives.

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