Articles on topics including political trust and behaviour, the different campaign strategies deployed during the 2017 UK general election, diversity among UK Conservative Brexiteers in the UK Parliament, and constitutional conventions in Westminster democracies.
- Money, Sex and Broken Promises: Politicians’ Bad Behaviour Reduces Trust
Richard Rose, Bernhard Wessels [Editors’ choice]
- ‘For the Many, Not the Few’: Strategising the Campaign Trail at the 2017 UK General Election
- Did They Write Back? A Mandate Divide in Response to Constituent Casework in Devolved Bodies
Alex Parsons, Rebecca Rumbul
- Visible, Elected, but Effectively Nominal: Visibility as a Barrier Maintaining the Political Underrepresentation of Britain’s Immigrant Origin Communities
- Effects of the Mixed Parallel Electoral System in Lithuania: The Worst of All Worlds?
- ‘Less Stale, Only Slightly Less Male, but Overwhelmingly Less Pale’: the 2015 New Conservative Brexiters in the House of Commons
- Political Staff and the Gendered Division of Political Labour in Canada
Feodor Snagovsky, Matthew Kerby
- Electoral Rules and Legislators’ Productivity
- The Dynamics of Constitutional Conventions in Westminster Democracies
Nicholas Barry, Narelle Miragliotta, Zim Nwokora
- Fashioning Parliament: The Politics of Dress in Myanmar’s Postcolonial Legislatures
- How Formal Parliamentary Negotiation Affects Policy-Making: Evidence from Taiwan
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Lord Frost’s appointment as Minister of State in the Cabinet Office to lead on UK-EU relations brings some welcome clarity about future government arrangements in this area. However, it also raises challenges for parliamentary scrutiny, above all with respect to his status as a Member of the House of Lords.
There was controversy on 9 February over whether the government had used procedural trickery to swerve a backbench rebellion in the House of Commons on a clause inserted in the Trade Bill by the House of Lords. Apparently, it was something to do with ‘packaging’. What does that mean, and was it true? The answer is all about ‘ping-pong’.
The contrasting post-Brexit fates of the two Houses’ EU-focused select committees have come about through processes in the Lords and the Commons that so far have differed markedly. This difference reflects the distinction between government control of business in the Commons, and the largely self-governing nature of the Lords.
Before Brexit, mechanisms for inter-parliamentary relations and scrutiny of inter-governmental relations in the UK were unsatisfactory. Post-Brexit, the need for reform has become urgent. There should be a formal inter-parliamentary body, drawn from all five of the UK’s legislative chambers, with responsibility for scrutiny of inter-governmental working.
The end of the transition period is likely to expose even more fully the scope of the policy-making that the government can carry out via Statutory Instruments, as it uses its new powers to develop post-Brexit law. However, there are few signs yet of a wish to reform delegated legislation scrutiny, on the part of government or the necessary coalition of MPs.
Parliament’s role around the end of the Brexit transition and conclusion of the EU future relationship treaty is a constitutional failure to properly scrutinise the executive and the law. As the UK moves to do things differently after 1 January, MPs must do more to ensure they can better discharge their responsibilities regarding the making of UK treaties.