Re: Non royal royal relatives and politics
- From: frederick@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: 1 May 2006 21:06:03 -0700
Stan Brown wrote:
The Sovereign is _part_ of Parliament. No bill becomes law unless it
has the Royal Assent. However, this is a distinction without a
difference, since the constitution says that the Sovereign _must_
give the Royal Assent to any properly passed bill, regardless of its
That may be open to question. IANACL*, but I would think that the
Sovereign would at least be bound to refuse assent on the advice of his
or her ministers. We're always reminded in this context that the last
time Royal Assent was refused was back in 1708 or so, but wasn't that
indeed because of the advice given to Queen Anne by her ministers?
Another issue is that when discussing the British constitution, we all
agree that it's largely based on convention and precedence, but then we
tend to assume that convention and precedence can only have been
established in the past, as if those past times had never been "now".
What if, say, the Government decided on the verge of a general election
to push through a bill extending the life of Parliament indefinitely?
What if the Sovereign of the day decided to exert a little bit of
political backbone and refused assent? Clearly a constitutional crisis
would arise, but could it be said that the Sovereign had acted
unlawfully or outside the spirit of the constitution?
Alternatively, what if the Sovereign refused assent on the basis that a
bill was, indeed, not properly passed?
It's seemingly possible to argue anything in the world of "what if",
I'll grant you.
So effectively, stripping away the "dignified" parts of the
constitution the House of Commons is supreme, though the Lords have
power to delay most types of bills for a while.
More precisely than that, the Government is effectively supreme,
primarily due to the manner in which the electoral system operates.
* I am not a constitutional lawyer
- Prev by Date: Re: Constituent states in the UN (Was: Could the Irish sit?)
- Next by Date: Re: Constituent states in the UN (Was: Could the Irish sit?)
- Previous by thread: Re: Non royal royal relatives and politics
- Next by thread: Re: Non royal royal relatives and politics