who <would> be the actual political leader of the government


But in most nations with royal families, like Sweden or Japan, monarch power is minimal, and they have few if any official state duties. They retain mostly symbolic power, and exist as the face of the country for ceremonial functions. Known as the “head of state,” they differ from the “head of government,” who would be the actual political leader of the government.
Why Do We Still Have Monarchies?, video by NowThis

Why is it "would be" instead of "is" (which I would have expected)?

Thank you.
  • heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    It's a bit like 'who, if you were to ask me, I would say is the actual leader'.

    But a grammarian might be able to explain it better from a grammar angle.

    The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    As elroy says, "would" can be used when defining or explaining what something is, but the whole passage is fairly awkward. They are known as "heads of state," as distinguished from "heads of government," that is, the actual political leaders of government.
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