Themes

Making better law

Acts of Parliament in the Parliamentary Archives, Houses of Parliament, Westminster. (© UK Parliament / Parliamentary Archives)

The process for making and scrutinising legislation at Westminster is often unsatisfactory and poorly understood. How does the process work? Who influences it? And how could it be improved?

News / Democracy is in danger, warns Theresa May - Parliament Matters podcast, Episode 35 transcript

Former Prime Minister, Theresa May MP, delivered a stark warning about the state of democracy in a powerful Churchill-Attlee Lecture commemorating the Hansard Society's 80th anniversary. This week, we also got a tantalizing glimpse of Labour's parliamentary strategy in a speech by Lucy Powell MP, the Shadow Leader of the House of Commons. And Lib Dem Chief Whip Wendy Chamberlain MP reveals the behind-the-scenes efforts and cross-party collaboration that led to a successful amendment this week to protect the safety of those on the parliamentary estate.

17 May 2024
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News / Is the Conservative Party falling apart? - Parliament Matters podcast, Episode 34 transcript

With no immediate general election in sight what can be achieved in Westminster before MPs finally make their rendezvous with the voters? And do the opportunities created by the defection of Natalie Elphicke MP outweigh the friction created by welcoming such a controversial new MP to Labour’s ranks? We talk to Professor Tim Bale about defeat, defections and the internal dynamics of the Conservative Party. And as Wayne David MP’s Private Members’ Bill to tackle SLAPPS – strategic lawsuits against political participation - grinds its way through Parliament we catch up on the Committee debate this week which saw MPs grappling with the fine technical detail of how to balance the right to sue for defamation with the right to enjoy free speech and not to be oppressed by legal bullying tactics.

10 May 2024
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News / Post Office Horizon Scandal: What is Parliament doing about it? - Parliament Matters podcast, Episode 33 transcript

Should Parliament simply overturn the convictions of postmasters caught up in the Post Office Horizon scandal? That’s what the Government proposes to do through the Post Office (Horizon system) Offences Bill. But quashing of convictions is normally a matter for the courts. Some MPs have misgivings about setting a constitutional precedent as well as practical concerns about how the Bill will be implemented. We talk to the Chair of the Justice Select Committee, Sir Bob Neill MP.

03 May 2024
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News / Is AI set to destroy trust in elections? Tackling misinformation in politics & Parliament, with top fact checker Full Fact's Chris Morris - Parliament Matters podcast, Episode 32 transcript

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the capacity to make it far easier to generate and spread political misinformation online. But could it actually impact the result of elections? We talk to Chris Morris, head of fact-checking organisation Full Fact, about the scale of misinformation in politics, the potential impact of AI, and what politicians and organisations like Full Fact can do about it.

30 Apr 2024
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News / Rwanda Bill becomes law: but what was really going on behind the scenes in Parliament? - Parliament Matters podcast, Episode 31 transcript

The Rwanda Bill has made it over the parliamentary finishing line but not without some last-minute drama. We talk to the SNP’s Alison Thewliss MP about what went on in a small room, behind the Speaker’s Chair, away from the cameras!

26 Apr 2024
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Guides / What is the King’s Speech?

06 Nov 2023
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Projects / Delegated Legislation Review

02 Nov 2021
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Blog / Ping-pong and packaging

13 Feb 2021
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Publications / A New Normal? Parliament after Brexit

09 Mar 2020
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Guides / What is a Ballot Bill?

13 Dec 2019
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Guides / What is a Presentation Bill?

13 Dec 2019
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Blog / Whose House Is It Anyway?

12 Oct 2017