7 ConstitutionUnlike most countries, Britain does not have a single document as its constitutionBritain’s constitution is uncodified, which means it cannot be found in any single document. It is a collection of past documents
8 Branches of government 3Branches of governmentThe Legislature:The Executive:The Judiciary:The houses of Parliament: Lords & CommonsThe Prime Minister & his Cabinet of MinistersThe Courts
9 SovereigntyIn the British political system the legislature branch of government is sovereignIt rules over ALL other governmental institutionsThe legislature can pass any laws it wishesWhat are the pros/cons of this system?
10 The Legislature Branch The legislative branch of the British government has 2 chambersThe House of CommonsThe House of LordsThese chambers meet in the Palace of Westminster
11 The House of Commons There are 646 Members of Parliaments (MPs) Each MP represents a different area of BritainThe primary function of the House of Commons is debate and pass laws
12 The House of Lords There are 746 lords There are three types of lords: Lords Temporal - these are Lords who have been appointed by the government and Hereditary LordsLaw Lords - these are lords who are lawyers and judgesLords Spiritual - these are senior members of the Church of England
13 The House of Lords The House of Lords has two main functions: To examine laws passed by the House of Commons and give suggestions to make it betterTo be the highest court of appeal in Britain
14 T/F Britain’s constitution is a single document? What are the three branches of government?What is sovereignty? Who has it in the government?Name the 2 chambers of the Legislature branch?Name the 2 chambers of Parliament?How do the functions of the Houses of Lords & Commons differ?
15 There is NO date for elections in Britain, but the maximum time between elections is 5 years When are elections?The Monarch decides when to hold an electionHowever…in reality, the Prime Minister decides when to have an election(REMEMBER THE MONARCH IS JUST A CERMONIAL FIGURE)
16 General Elections Britain has 646 voting districts About 70,000 people live in each districtWho can vote:Every UK citizenover the age of 18EXCEPT people who are in prison or with serious mental disabilities
17 How to vote in a British Election ‘First Past the Post’ electoral systemYou get a ballot paper with a choice of candidates and you go into a private booth mark an ‘X’ next to the person you want to be your MP.You fold up your ballot paper and put it into a box…This means nobody knows who you voted forThe person with the most votes then becomes the MP for your district in parliamentHow to vote in a British Election
18 Who can be an MP? ANYBODY who is… Over 18 years old A British citizen Able to pay a deposit of £ (about 5,434 UAH)
19 Political PartiesYou do not have to belong to a political party to be an MP but most MPs belong to one of the main political partiesCurrently the three biggest parties in Britain in terms elected MPs:LabourConservativesLiberal Democrats
20 So who gets to be PM?Her Majesty’s Government is formed by the party with the most MPs in the House of CommonsThe leader of biggest party becomes the Prime Minister and chooses his senior colleagues to become his ministersEach ministers must care for a government department: Ex: the economy, defense, healthcare, etc
21 The Opposition The party with the second most MPs forms the Opposition Their role is to question the government in parliament on what it is doingThe second biggest party is currently the Labour partyTheir leader is Ed Milibrand. His official title is Leader of the Opposition.
22 Adversarial politicsMembers of different parties in Parliament face each other. This is called: Adversarial politics or politicians arguing with each otherThe most arguments happen when the PM’s Questions. This takes place once a week when MPs ask the Prime Minister difficult questions about his actions. The Leader of the Opposition gets to ask the most questions.
23 DevolutionThe House of Commons and House of Lords are the parliament for the EnglandBut there are also parliaments in the other three countries of the UK:ScotlandWalesNorthern IrelandThese parliaments have the powers to make laws on issues like healthcare and education BUT not foreign policy or defense
24 Name three political parties of the UK. Describe the opposition. When are they elected?What is an MP and PM?Who is the current PM?Describe the devolution of the UK.How are they elected?