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The British Monarchy




The British Monarchy

There is no written document that could be called the Constitution of the UK. There are 3 distinctive features that have influenced Britain's social and political institutions: statute law, common law, conventions.

Statute laws, which are written laws, are Acts of Parliament. They include rules of major importance for the history of the country, for example, the Bill of Rights(1689), which contains that there is no standing army at times of peace, a free elections of MP's,

the freedom of speech in Parliament and the consent of Parliament for all laws.

Common law is the body of traditional, unwritten laws of England, based on judges' decisions and custom. The advancing of the Habeas Corpus Act(1679) orders that a person should be told by a judge why he or she is being held in custody.

Conventions are basically rules that have developed during the centuries or may have come into existence only recently. As a reason of conventions there is a prime minister or a cabinet. Some conventions are far more important than most of the statues or common laws: the convention that the monarch assents to a bill passed by both Houses of Parliament as compared with the theoretical right to deny consent. Conventions are generally accepted rules for ensuring that the Constitution is adapted to prevailing conditions and the abuse of public power is restrained.



In Britain there are three elements of governments: the House of Commons, with its 650 elected members,

the House of Lords, with hereditary and appointed peers, and the queen, who is Head of State.

But real legislative power is concentrated in the commons: the Lords can only delay measure and no monarch has vetoed a bill since 1707. The Queen appoints the Prime Minister and the

cabinet, but, in practice, she always chooses the leaders of the biggest party in the Commons

as the Prime Minister, who then chooses the cabinet. 










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