Civil Service

Is the UK Subject to a Deep State? Liz Truss and the Civil Service

By: Jai Jethwa

Politics has moved frenetically in recent weeks. There has been the appointment of a new First Minister in Scotland, the drama of England’s local elections, and, inevitably, countless headlines over the Government’s Rwanda plan as it entered the UK … [Read more...] about Is the UK Subject to a Deep State? Liz Truss and the Civil Service

The Office of the Parliamentary Counsel: Functions, Comparisons, Criticisms 

By: Tasneem Ghazi

The Office of the Parliamentary Counsel (OPC) is a division of government lawyers who specialise in drafting legislation and assist with its passage through the legislative process. The OPC is responsible for drafting all government bills, advising … [Read more...] about The Office of the Parliamentary Counsel: Functions, Comparisons, Criticisms 

Government by WhatsApp: a fetter on scrutiny?

By: Cassandra Somers-Joce

In March 2023, the Cabinet Office released an internal policy regulating the use of private communications channels. The policy discouraged the use of platforms such as private email, WhatsApp, or SMS for official government business. It superseded, … [Read more...] about Government by WhatsApp: a fetter on scrutiny?

Expanding Ministerial Discretion by Eroding Human Rights: the Government’s Draft Guidance on Rule 39 Injunctions

By: Jane Richards

On 17 January, the Cabinet Secretary to the Home Office sent a letter outlining the future direction of the Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill (‘the Bill’). In it, he confirmed that the proposed Guidance (‘the Guidance’) to be … [Read more...] about Expanding Ministerial Discretion by Eroding Human Rights: the Government’s Draft Guidance on Rule 39 Injunctions

The pre-election period: Purdah on the dancefloor 

By: Alys Thomas

Introduction  The latest date the next UK General Election can be held is 28 January 2025. That must be called before 17 December 2024, when the Prime Minister must ask the Monarch to dissolve Parliament. The ‘pre-election period’ (previously … [Read more...] about The pre-election period: Purdah on the dancefloor 

‘Politicisation’ of the Civil Service? The House of Lords Constitution Committee Reports

By: Kate Dewsnip

On 8 September 2022 Tom Scholar was removed from his position as Permanent Secretary to the Treasury by Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng. It was widely reported that the sacking of Scholar was a politically driven decision intended to rail … [Read more...] about ‘Politicisation’ of the Civil Service? The House of Lords Constitution Committee Reports

Royal Commissions Part Four: Once and Future Royal Commissions?

By: Colin Talbot

This is the final instalment of four pieces on the place and function of royal commissions, you can find the previous blogs HERE.  Anyone who has listened to recent evidence coming out of the Covid Inquiry will be struck by just how … [Read more...] about Royal Commissions Part Four: Once and Future Royal Commissions?

Royal Commissions Part Three: Constitutional Reform

By: Colin Talbot

In the first of this series of blogs I pointed out the surge of interest in, and demands for, Royal Commissions on various topics, even though they have not been used as an instrument of policy formation or constitutional reform for more than two … [Read more...] about Royal Commissions Part Three: Constitutional Reform

Royal Commissions Part Two: Government by Commission 

By: Colin Talbot

In a previous post I started to examine the hazy world of ‘Royal Commissions’ and similar bodies. Most commentators and analysts of such bodies maintained there was not very much difference between Royal Commissions and the many similar … [Read more...] about Royal Commissions Part Two: Government by Commission 

The purpose of legislative scrutiny

By: Kate Dewsnip

It is broadly accepted that parliamentary scrutiny of legislation is a ‘good’ thing and that, if possible, there should be more of it. It is also broadly accepted that it is often ineffective and wrongfully subverted. As a result, most commentaries … [Read more...] about The purpose of legislative scrutiny

The Budget – getting and spending

By: Colin Talbot

As another Budget Day comes around, the media focus is inevitably on its contents. But, despite this frenzy, the constitutional and conventional context of the Budget remains poorly understood. This is perhaps understandable as the processes and … [Read more...] about The Budget – getting and spending