The doctrine that the UK Parliament is sovereign and cannot bind its successors is at the heart of the UK constitution. It means that the government of the day can replace, amend or repeal with relative ease any constitutional legislation passed by … [Read more...] about So long, EVEL and the FTPA: one step forward, one step back?
The Internet is a subject of sustained public interest. There is intense discussion, in the UK as elsewhere, of its implications, and how we should respond to them. Both optimistic and pessimistic interpretations of the technology are possible, often … [Read more...] about The Internet and the constitution: an historical perspective
Job Title: Research Fellow Salary: £2,000 pcm Location: Westminster/Remote Length of Contract: 4 months fixed term The Constitution Society is looking to recruit a Research Fellow on a fixed-term appointment to research and write a … [Read more...] about New job opportunity: Constitution Society Research Fellow
The current Elections Bill before Parliament contains a range of measures which require careful consideration. Among the most concerning are steps which appear designed to limit the independence of the Electoral Commission. Among these are … [Read more...] about Elections Bill: a modest proposal to improve the Speaker’s Committee on the Electoral Commission
Baroness Taylor of Bolton, Chair of the House of Lords Constitution Committee Documents such as the Cabinet Manual, the Ministerial Code and the Civil Service Code are an important part of the United Kingdom's constitutional framework and, … [Read more...] about An updated Cabinet Manual is needed to maintain public trust, ethical standards and our constitution
The furore around Matt Hancock’s resignation. The questions about who first paid for the Downing Street flat refurbishment. The outrage that followed lobbying by former prime minister David Cameron. A series of recent events have raised questions … [Read more...] about The prime minister can strengthen the system for upholding standards in government without giving up his role as the ultimate arbiter
Although the pandemic has heightened the importance of delegated legislation in everyday policymaking, government reliance on delegated legislation has been on the rise for around a century. In 1921, Cecil Carr described the relationship between … [Read more...] about In the highest degree, delegated and discretionary
Five years ago today, the UK voted to leave the European Union. This was a significant political upset; Brexit had been officially opposed by the major parties in parliament, the Prime Minister, and a clear majority of scientific and economic … [Read more...] about Something is rotten in the state of Britain: beliefs about the fairness of elections in freefall
In the wake of last month’s elections, questions began to be asked about the prospect of an opposition electoral alliance. The Labour Party lost a number of councils and the Hartlepool by-election, suggesting it faces immense challenges in seeking to … [Read more...] about Electoral pacts and the constitution: could a pact be successful?
Glyndwr Cennydd Jones discusses the new book Whose Wales? by Gwynoro Jones and Alun Gibbard, which is available to read here. Debates regarding Home Rule, self-governance, or even independence for Wales, have inspired and enraged for well over a … [Read more...] about Whose Wales? The battle for Welsh devolution and nationhood, 1880 to 2020
Since Scotland’s votes were counted a month ago, there has been much debate about whether the results constituted a ‘mandate’ for an independence referendum. Some debated the significance, or lack of it, of the absence of a single party majority for … [Read more...] about The UK government and a second Scottish independence referendum: an unsustainable paradox?
For better public policy, Parliament should assert itself and take control of its own business (see How Parliament would take control). But what kind of Parliament? An influential idea in political thinking is that governments need to be strong in … [Read more...] about The English delusion