Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Humanities and Social Sciences

Kinds of Parliament

  • european parliament
  • national parliament

  • Selected Abstracts

    Anti-drink driving reform in Britain, c. 1920,80

    ADDICTION, Issue 9 2010
    Bill Luckin
    ABSTRACT Aim The goal of this report is to provide a framework for understanding and interpreting political, scientific and cultural attitudes towards drink driving in 20th-century Britain. Exploring the inherent conservatism of successive governments, Members of Parliament (MPs) and the public towards the issue during the interwar years, the contribution seeks to explain the shift from legislative paralysis to the introduction of the breathalyser in 1967. Design Based on governmental, parliamentary and administrative records, the report follows a mainly narrative route. It places particular emphasis on connections between post-war extra-parliamentary and parliamentary movements for reform. Setting The paper follows a linear path from the 1920s to the 1970s. Britain lies at the heart of the story but comparisons are made with nations,particularly the Scandinavian states,which took radical steps to prosecute drinking and dangerous drivers at an early date. Findings The report underlines the vital post-war role played by Graham Page, leading parliamentary spokesman for the Pedestrians' Association; the centrality of the Drew Report (1959) into an ,activity resembling driving'; the pioneering Conservative efforts of Ernest Marples; and Barbara Castle's consolidating rather than radically innovative activities between 1964 and 1967. Conclusion Both before and after the Second World War politicians from both major parties gave ground repeatedly to major motoring organizations. With the ever-escalating growth of mass motorization in the 1950s, both Conservative and Labour governments agonized over gridlock and ,murder on the roads'. Barbara Castle finally took decisive action against drink drivers, but the ground had been prepared by Graham Page and Ernest Marples. [source]


    ECONOMIC INQUIRY, Issue 4 2010
    This article provides a test of the secularization hypothesis, which argues that economic growth, industrialization, increased literacy, and low fertility decrease religiosity. It focuses on the elections of the secular politicians who voted in favor of the separation between Church and State in the French Parliament in 1905. If the secularization hypothesis is correct, these secular politicians should have been elected in the most developed areas of France at the turn of the twentieth century. Contrary to the predictions of the secularization hypothesis, we find that the support for secular politicians originated in the rural areas of France. (JEL Z12, D72, N43) [source]

    More power to the European Parliament?

    ECONOMIC POLICY, Issue 35 2002
    Abdul G. Noury
    SUMMARY Many observers have expressed scepticism about granting more power to the European Parliament. The sceptics believe that Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) do not vote in a disciplined way and that they vote more often with their country group than with their European Party. Using a unique database consisting of all roll call votes by each individual MEP between 1989 and 1999 (over 6000 votes by over 1000 different MEPs), we show that the sceptics are wrong. Our data shows clearly that MEPs vote more along party lines than along country lines. Party cohesion is comparable to that of the US Congress and is increasing over time whereas country cohesion is low and declining. In short, politics in the European Parliament generally follows the traditional left,right divide that one finds in all European nations. These findings are valid across issues, even on issues like the structural and cohesion funds where one would expect country rather than party cohesion. In votes where the EP has the most power , those held under the so-called co-decision procedure , MEPs participate more and are more party-cohesive. In our opinion, this unique empirical analysis provides grounds for justifying a generalization of the co-decision procedure. [source]

    Elizabeth I as Stepmother

    Jacqueline Vanhoutte
    As a number of scholars have shown, Tudor male subjects were able to arrogate to themselves unprecedented powers by playing gender against class hierarchies. This essay considers how tropes of surrogacy furthered this process of political enfranchisement. As Victor Turner suggests, recurrent tropes are dynamic phenomena, which change meaning over time in a way that reveals the "emotional and volitional dimensions" present in social contexts. The prevalence of surrogate mothers in Elizabethan political and literary discourses reflects such a volitional dimension: writers (e.g. Lyly and Shakespeare), courtiers (e.g., Sir Philip Sidney), and politicians (e.g. members of Parliament) used images of stepmothers in consciously manipulative ways. Because of the ambiguous nature of figurative language, these men posited innovative ideas indirectly long before it became possible to articulate them directly. The evil stepdames of Tudor lore form an important precedent for John Locke's enlightened "foster father," whose acquired authority undermines the divine rights of fathers and kings. Stepmother tropes provided an alternative to the dominant analogies between family and state,analogies that aimed at suppressing disobedience and rebellion and at naturalizing the status quo. While men like Sidney and John Stubbs probably intended only limited applications for their stepmother tropes, this essay shows that these tropes called their monarch's absolute rule into question and justified their own political activity. Elizabethan writers thus contributed to the process of unmooring the English monarchy from divine right ideology, a process that culminated, intellectually speaking, in Locke's insistence on the consensual nature of government. (J.V.) [source]

    "Into a thousand parts": Representing the Nation in Henry V

    Jonathan Baldo
    Shakespeare's history plays in general, and Henry V in particular, grant a good deal of attention to Parliament. The injunction by the opening Chorus of Henry V, "Into a thousand parts divide one man," echoes Speaker of the House Edward Coke's anecdote about the origins of a bicameral Parliament, in the course of which he recounted a knight's purported remark that "his Majestie and the lordes there every one being great persons represented but themselves, but his commons though they were inferiour men yet every one of them represented a thowsand men."Henry V, like Shakespeare's earlier histories, explores the relationship between theatrical and parliamentary forms of representation. Recognizing the ways in which the plays both draw upon and challenge Elizabethan ideas about parliamentary representation casts new light on the relations between nobles and commoners in Shakespeare's histories. [source]

    The role of the European Parliament in forest environment issues

    Nikolaos D. Hasanagas
    This article deals with the potential influence of European parliamentarism on environmental policy in forested areas. It is addressed as much to policy analysts and parliamentary theorists as to those most directly involved therein, for example international lobbyists and policy-makers. The relative powers of the European Parliament, Council of Ministers and Commission and assorted interest groups (forestry and environmental activists) will be considered through the analysis of documents and expert interviews. The gradual extension of the European Parliament's power (co-operation and co-decision procedures) in combination with the parliamentary functions (control, legislation, election, articulation and communication) will be described where relevant to forest environment policy, in particular to competition, harmonization, internal markets, industry, research, land use, energy and development. The optimal lobbying terrains and prospects of environmental interest groups are also examined and the potential influence of the European Parliament on the implementation of such policy is explored. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment. [source]

    Thinking locally, acting supranationally: Niche party behaviour in the European Parliament

    Recent research on the European Parliament (EP) has neglected the idiosyncrasies of niche parties. Similarly, analyses of niche parties have not fully engaged the literature on the EP. This article builds on both literatures by analysing niche party behaviour in the EP as a distinct phenomenon. It is argued that niche parties will respond differently to institutional stimuli than parties more generally. To test this argument, Hix, Noury and Roland's work on EP party voting behaviour is replicated concentrating on niche parties only. It is found that participation in national government and institutional changes affect niche party legislators' voting behaviour, whereas they do not for legislators in the EP overall. These results have important implications for understanding both party behaviour in the EP and niche party behaviour more generally. [source]

    Actor alignments in the European Union before and after enlargement

    What impact has the 2004 enlargement had on legislative decision making in the European Union (EU)? This study answers this question by examining the controversies raised by a broad selection of legislative proposals from before and after the 2004 enlargement. The analyses focus on the alignments of decision-making actors found on those controversies. Member State representatives, the European Commission and the European Parliament vary considerably in the positions they take on controversial issues before and after enlargement. Consistent patterns in actor alignments are found for only a minority of controversial issues. To the extent that consistent patterns are found, the most common involve differences in the positions of Northern and Southern Member States and old and new Member States. The North-South alignment was more common in the EU-15 and reflected Northern Member States' preference for low levels of regulatory intervention. The new-old alignment that has been evident in the post-2004 EU reflects new Member States' preference for higher levels of financial subsidies. This study argues that the persistent diversity in actor alignments contributes to the EU's capacity to cope with enlargement. [source]

    European Union enlargement: Power distribution implications of the new institutional arrangements

    Fuad Aleskerov
    It is argued that enlargement challenges institutional balances and in particular relative powers of national actors within the European Union (EU). This article concentrates on the impact of future enlargement (with the current negotiating 12 candidates) on power distribution in the Council of Ministers of the European Union and the European Parliament based on the decisions taken at the Nice Summit in December 1800. It uses the Shapley-Shubik and Banzhaf indices to evaluate past and emerging power distributions in both the Council and in the Parliament. A brief section on Turkey (the thirteenth, non-negotiating, official candidate) is included to evaluate its possible impact in the case of admission to the Union. [source]

    Non-governmental Organisation Participation in the EU Law-making Process: The Example of Social Non-governmental Organisations at the Commission, Parliament and Council

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 5 2008
    Israel De Jesús Butler
    The Commission's current transparency initiative has focused attention on the rules (or lack of) governing access to the Commission as the initiator of legislation. This article examines more broadly, on the basis of interviews, both the formal and informal means of accessing not only the Commission, but also the European Parliament (in particular through intergroups) as well as the Council. By using specific examples of legislation it illustrates the routes by which ,social' non-governmental organisations currently interact with these institutions, offering examples of how their work may impact on the output of the Commission, Council and Parliament. The article avoids an overly legalistic analysis with an original glimpse at the ,hidden' workings of the EU law-making process which has hitherto received little attention among legal academics and practitioners. [source]

    The Cocoon of Power: Democratic Implications of Interinstitutional Agreements

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 1 2007
    Sonja Puntscher Riekmann
    It starts from the premise that democratic rules as developed in the national context may be used as a yardstick for supranational governance as well. Thus, parliamentarisation of the Union is defined as an increase in democracy, although relating problems such as weak European party systems, low turnouts, and remoteness are not to be neglected. The article evaluates several case studies on IIAs in this vein and asks whether they strengthen the European Parliament or not, and why. It arrives at conclusions that allow for differentiation: empowerment of the European Parliament occurs in particular when authorisation to conclude an IIA stems from the Treaty or from the power that the European Parliament has in crucial fields such as the budget and is willing to use for this purpose. Success is, however, not guaranteed in every case, and is sometimes more symbolic than real. However, a democratic critique must also stress negative consequences of IIAs in terms of responsivity, accountability, and transparency. [source]

    Sub-Constitutional Engineering: Negotiation, Content, and Legal Value of Interinstitutional Agreements in the EU

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 2 2006
    Isabella Eiselt
    Concretely speaking, these roles range from (a) explicitly authorised specifications of Treaty provisions via (b) not explicitly authorised specifications of vague Treaty law to (c) pure political undertaking. Based on the distinction between the constitutional and the operational level of the political game, we challenge the assumption that IIAs usually strengthen the European Parliament. As our case study, the 1993 interrelated package of IIAs on democracy, transparency and subsidiarity, illustrates, the European Parliament is not the only institution that benefits from IIAs, especially if they lack a sufficiently precise Treaty basis. Furthermore, if Treaty provisions underlying IIAs are precise, they also tend to produce precise and thus legally relevant content. Conversely, if IIAs deal primarily with elusive concepts they are likely to be legally ambiguous or even irrelevant at all. [source]

    The Politics of a European Civil Code

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 6 2004
    Martijn W. Hesselink
    That plan forms an important step towards a European Civil Code. In its Plan, the Commission tries to depoliticise the codification process by asking a group of academic experts to prepare what it calls a ,common frame of reference'. This paper argues that drafting a European Civil Code involves making many choices that are essentially political. It further argues that the technocratic approach which the Commission has adopted in the Action Plan effectively excludes most stakeholders from having their say during the stage when the real choices are made. Therefore, before the drafting of the CFR/ECC starts, the Commission should submit a list of policy questions regarding the main issues of European private law to the European Parliament and the other stakeholders. Such an alternative procedure would repoliticise the process. It would increase the democratic basis for a European Civil Code and thus its legitimacy. [source]

    ,Mad Cows' and Eurocrats,Community Responses to the BSE Crisis

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 5 2004
    Keith Vincent
    Responding to criticisms and recommendations made in the aftermath of the initial crisis, particularly by the European Parliament, the EU has embarked on a process of reforming the administrative landscape in this area. This has included the setting-up of a new regulatory agency, the European Food Safety Agency, and a commitment to the more effective use of scientific information. It is submitted that this could lead to the development of new information-based scientific networks that inform and direct EU governance, networks which should contain the European Food Safety Agency at their centre. [source]

    European Parliament and Executive Federalism: Approaching a Parliament in a Semi-Parliamentary Democracy

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 5 2003
    Philipp Dann
    This paper proposes an understanding of the European Parliament not along theories about what the EU should become, but what it is and surely will continue to be, that is a very distinct federal structure. The European Parliament is a parliament in an executive federalism,with far-reaching consequences for its form and functions. After outlining the characteristics of this federal structure, these consequences will be demonstrated by analysing the European Parliament in contrast with two ideal types of parliaments: the working parliament, separated from the executive branch and centred around strong committees (like the US Congress), and the debating parliament, characterised by the fusion of parliamentary majority and government as well as plenary debates (like the British House of Commons). Dwelling thus on a comparison to a legislature in a non-parliamentary federal system, like the US Congress, this paper argues that the European Parliament might best be understood as a special case of a working parliament. Finally, it will be proposed to consider the influence of executive federalism not only as fundamentally shaping the European Parliament but also as rendering the EU generally a semi-parliamentary democracy. [source]

    The Treaty of Nice: The Sharing of Power and the Institutional Balance in the European Union,A Continental Perspective

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 3 2001
    Xenophon A. Yataganas
    This paper presents an initial response to the conclusions of the Nice Summit and the new EU Treaty which emerged from it. It consists of two parts: in the first I discuss the climate in which the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) took place and the opening positions of the Institutions, the Member States, and the applicant countries. The results achieved at Nice are set out in the second part, with special emphasis on the themes that mark a shift of power within the Community's institutional architecture; i.e. the extension of qualified-majority voting in the Council and the co-decision procedure with the European Parliament, the reweighting of votes and the composition of the Institutions with a view to an enlargement which is both imminent and unprecedented in the history of the EU. I conclude that while the results of the IGC and the new Treaty of Nice fall short of what is needed in an EU with ambitions on a continental scale, they do mark another stage in the process of European integration and the permanent evolution of its constitution. In this sense, the balance of power is likely to be different from what it has been in the past. The Franco-German axis has been severely weakened, the UK and Spain seem to be determined to play a central role, and the smaller countries are seeking to retain some influence over how the process works. New alliances are likely to emerge, particularly after enlargement, with Germany in search of a dominant position, France desperately trying to preserve the status quo, and the UK wanting to influence the direction of moves towards integration from the inside. Nice seems to mark an interim stage in this process. A new IGC has already been scheduled for 2004. There is no doubt that the post-Nice period will be one of transition towards a new distribution of power within the EU, sanctioned by a new, highly constitutional treaty. [source]

    Appointing and Censuring the European Commission: The Adaptation of Parliamentary Institutions to the Community Context

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 3 2001
    Paul Magnette
    The parliamentary model at the heart of European civic cultures has deeply influenced ,Constitutional reforms' in the European Community. But the EC is not a Parliamentary state and the transplant of national institutions in its own political context gives rise to hybrid practices. This paper examines this process of hybridation, and shows that new practices of appointment and censure are emerging in the Community, mixing classic parliamentary institutions with the crucial features of the EC itself. Focusing on recent tensions between the Council, the Commission, and the European Parliament, it shows that they are governed by national divisions, technocratic and legal reasoning rather than by classic majoritarian attitudes. It concludes that, while this new model of accountability might prove efficient in terms of inter-institutional controls, it remains symbolically inefficient, because it does not help citizens understand and accept the Community institutional model. [source]

    The Fall and Renewal of the Commission: Accountability, Contract and Administrative Organisation

    EUROPEAN LAW JOURNAL, Issue 2 2000
    Paul Craig
    The fall of the Santer Commission, prompted by the Report of the Committee of Independent Experts, sent shock waves throughout the entire Community. This article seeks to examine the nature of the problems which beset the Commission, to place these within the broader context of decision-making by public bodies, and to consider also the responsibilities of the Council and European Parliament for the delivery of agreed Community policies. The article analyses in detail the Reports of the Committee of Independent Experts, and the subsequent reforms initiated by the Prodi Commission, in order to assess the prospects for improved service delivery in the future. [source]

    The European Parliament and the Commission Crisis: A New Assertiveness?

    GOVERNANCE, Issue 3 2002
    David Judge
    This article examines two claims made about the "Commission crisis" of 1999: first, that the accountability of the Commission to the European Parliament (EP) was significantly increased; and, second, that the model of parliamentary government in the European Union (EU) was advanced by events in 1999. In analyzing the crisis and its consequences, this article focuses upon the powers of dismissal and appointment, and what these powers reveal about the capacity of the EP both to hold the Commission responsible for its collective and individual actions and to influence its policy agenda. If a parliamentary model is to develop in the EU, the negative parliamentary powers of censure and dismissal have to be balanced by the positive powers of appointment and enhanced executive responsiveness. On both counts,dismissal and appointment,the 1999 "Commission crisis" did not point to the clear and unambiguous dawning of a "genuine European parliamentary democracy." [source]

    Not Just Parliamentary ,Cowboys and Indians': Ministerial Responsibility and Bureaucratic Drift

    GOVERNANCE, Issue 3 2000
    Christopher Kam
    A strict interpretation of the doctrine of individual ministerial responsibility requires that the minister alone bear public responsibility for her department's actions. Critics charge that it is not sensible to hold a mminister solel responsible for departmental errors when government departments are so large and complex, and senior bureaucrats so powerful in their own right; senior bureaucrats should be made directly accountable to Parliament. The paper uses a game theoretic model to show that this criticism is misguided. To the extent that politicians more effectively police the bureaucracy when they are governed by a doctrine of ministerial responsibility than when they are not, the doctrine strengthens accountability. Much of the doctrine's force comes from the threat of ministerial resignation, but the opportunities that the doctrine creates for opposition parties to embarrass the government also contribute to its efficacy. [source]

    Co-decision and Inter-Committee Conflict in the European Parliament Post-Amsterdam1

    Charlotte Burns
    This article makes a two-fold contribution to the European Parliament (EP) literature. First, it challenges the dominant assumption that post-Amsterdam the EP has experienced an increase in its powers. Through analysis of the Socrates case the article shows that the EP is now potentially weaker under the post-Amsterdam co-decision procedure (co-decision II), than it was under the earlier variant, co-decision I. Second, the article uncovers a hitherto overlooked aspect of internal divisions within the parliament, by revealing that there is scope for inter-committee conflict in the EP over budgetary allocations for multi-annual programmes. It is argued that such conflict can weaken the parliament in co-decision negotiations with the council, and that the negotiation of the EU's new multi-annual budgetary framework provides the perfect conditions for such internecine conflict to occur once more. [source]

    What should be given a priority , costly medications for relatively few people or inexpensive ones for many?

    The Health Parliament public consultation initiative in Israel
    Abstract Background, In the past two decades, government and civic organizations have been implementing a wide range of deliberative public consultations on health care-related policy. Drawing on these experiences, a public consultation initiative in Israel called the Health Parliament was established. Goals, To implement a public consultation initiative that will engage members of the public in the discussion of four healthcare policy questions associated with equity in health services and on priorities for determining which medications and treatments should be included in the basket of national health services. Method, One hundred thirty-two participants from the general population recruited through a random sample were provided with background materials and met over several months in six regional sites. Dilemma activities were used and consultants were available for questions and clarifications. Participants presented their recommendations in a national assembly to the Minister of Health. Outcomes, Across the regional groups the recommendations were mostly compatible, in particular regarding considering the healthcare system's monetary state, even at the expense of equity, but for each policy question minority views were also expressed. A strong emphasis in the recommendations was pragmatism. Conclusion, Participants felt the experience was worthwhile; though the actual impact of their recommendations on policy making was indirect, they were willing to participate in future consultations. However, despite enthusiasm the initiative was not continued. Issues raised are whether consultation initiatives must have a direct impact on healthcare policy decisions or can be mainly a venue to involve citizens in the deliberation of healthcare policy issues. [source]

    New light on the life and manuscripts of a political pamphleteer: Thomas Fovent,

    HISTORICAL RESEARCH, Issue 219 2010
    Clementine Oliver
    This article offers new information regarding a little-known manuscript of the Historia Mirabilis Parliamenti by Thomas Fovent, found in a private collection in New York, and presents a more complete portrait of the author's life. Fovent's Historia is a lively account of the Merciless Parliament of 1388 and has long been known to scholars from May McKisack's 1926 edition published in the Camden Miscellany, based on the only known manuscript in the Bodleian Library. The recent digitization of Thomas Fovent's will by The National Archives provides readily available definitive proof that Fovent lived and worked as part of London's bureaucratic milieu in the later fourteenth century. [source]

    Tudor dynastic problems revisited*

    HISTORICAL RESEARCH, Issue 212 2008
    E. W. Ives
    This article reassesses Henry VIII's succession acts. It argues that the first was primarily concerned with the breach with Rome, but that the second and third revolutionized succession law. Parliament accepted Henry's right to limit the succession to legitimate ,heirs of his body', so excluding collaterals, and to designate in their place whoever he wished to succeed. This allowed him to deny the crown to Mary and Elizabeth because of illegitimacy, but enabled them to succeed as his nominees. The original legislation shows an awareness of the contradiction in this. The consequent difficulty in reconciling common law and statute was at the heart of the 1553 crisis, the claims of both Mary and Elizabeth and the ongoing Elizabethan succession debate. The accession of James I punctured Henry's scheming and marked a return to common law rules. [source]

    The Long Parliament goes to war: the Irish campaigns, 1641,3*

    HISTORICAL RESEARCH, Issue 207 2007
    Robert Armstrong
    As England lurched towards war in 1642, the Westminster parliament had already become embroiled in a lengthy and costly war of reconquest in Ireland. An examination of the war effort in Ireland reveals the scale of parliament's commitment to sustained long-distance warfare, the range of initiatives developed to harness the necessary political and material resources, and its increasing reliance upon an emerging war interest of investors and suppliers. The outbreak of civil war in England saw parliament deploy a similar gamut of initiatives, nationally and locally, to those used in Ireland, but in very different strategic and political contexts. Parliament was engaged in a smaller-scale version of the multiple-front conflicts of the great European powers and disengagement from Ireland, England's Flanders, was not an option. [source]

    A parliament full of rats?

    HISTORICAL RESEARCH, Issue 203 2006
    Piers Plowman, the Good Parliament of 137
    This article reconsiders the relationship between the Middle English poem Piers Plowman and the political events of the later fourteenth century. Its contention is that Piers Plowman articulates a profound sense of disappointment in the inability of the late medieval English parliament to rectify the woes of the kingdom. This disillusionment was generated not only by the reversal of the measures taken against the court in the Good Parliament of 1376, but also by a much broader context of failure by the crown to address the petitions presented in parliament by the political community. Ultimately, it was parliament's failure to deliver institutional remedies to these longstanding problems that set the conditions for the ,direct action' of the rebels in the Peasants' Revolt of 1381. [source]

    Persistence, Principle and Patriotism in the Making of the Union of 1707: The Revolution, Scottish Parliament and the squadrone volante

    HISTORY, Issue 306 2007
    Since the 1960s most historians of the Union of 1707 have considered it a less than glorious chapter in Scotland's history. Driven by ambition and greed, Scots politicians, covetous of English wealth and swayed by promises and bribes, bartered their nation's independence for personal gain. Those genuinely committed to political union were in a minority. The following article maintains that this interpretation is based on an essentially short-term approach to the subject. Concentrating on the worsening relations between Scotland and England in the years immediately preceding the Union gives a distorted impression of what was a more enduring concern. It suggests the Revolution of 1688,9 had a far greater impact on the politics of union than previously anticipated, with the religious and political freedoms it guaranteed shaping the beliefs of a large number of Scots MPs who sat in Parliament 1706,7, almost half of whom had been members of King William's Convention Parliament with a majority supporting union. Focusing on the squadrone volante, one of the two much-maligned Scots unionist parties , the article traces the ideological roots of its key members and illustrates the various factors that led them to endorse an incorporating union which offered security for presbyterianism and a solution to Scotland's economic underdevelopment. Not denying that management and ambition played a significant part in securing the Union, it highlights the fact that amongst the Scottish political elite there was also a degree of genuine commitment and principled support. [source]

    Religion, Power and Parliament: Rothschild and Bradlaugh Revisited

    HISTORY, Issue 305 2007
    The British parliament in the nineteenth century reflected the increasingly democratic stability of the British state in a century that saw numerous convulsions on the European continent. It embodied the majesty of British law, the idea that all adult males who dwelt in Britain shared the universal rights of a true-born Englishman, including the right to speak on the affairs of the nation. The repeated attempts of the Jewish Baron Lionel de Rothschild and the atheist Charles Bradlaugh to take their seats after having been lawfully elected to parliament showed, however, that barriers remained against those who were in some way considered ,un-British'. The debates that the perseverance of both men engendered inside the parliament reveal how strongly the conservative British establishment clung on to what it considered to be the Protestant national character. To make British laws, one had to be British in more than citizenship. In essence, it was a debate about British national identity in an increasingly ,liberal' world. The eventual inclusion of both Rothschild and Bradlaugh marked a further shift away from religious conformity as a measure of ,Britishness' as the century drew to a close. [source]

    The Rule of Law in the Realm and the Province of New York: Prelude to the American Revolution

    HISTORY, Issue 301 2006
    British and American views of public law have diverged greatly over the past two hundred years. This article examines the evolution of New York's adherence to the rule of fundamental law and the use of colonial common law courts to protect the rights of New York subjects against the prerogative power of the crown. As a conquered province from 1664 to 1683, New York was denied a legislature. Thereafter the colonial legislative bodies were active in making unsuccessful attempts to claim their birthright as Englishmen. In England the Glorious Revolution represented a major step in the development of parliamentary supremacy. In New York, however, it facilitated an ethnic insurrection followed by the realization that English governmental policy mandated the denial of basic rights of Englishmen to colonial residents. The Glorious Revolution simply made it possible for parliament, as well as the crown, to regulate colonial affairs without any constitutional restrictions prior to 1774. In terms of constitutional dynamics in eighteenth-century England, continued imperial rule through an untrammelled royal prerogative substantially increased the political power and revenues of the crown. Failing to consider the impact of monarchial power in a growing empire, the 1688,9 Convention Parliament laid the foundation for an unbalanced British government in the middle of the eighteenth century. Deprived of patronage and extraordinary revenues at home, the monarchs turned to regulation of their empire and to reaping increased financial benefit. Both of these unintended consequences of the Glorious Revolution threatened parliamentary supremacy, even as parliament's new-found power began to undermine the rule of law in the empire. [source]

    James I, Gondomar and the Dissolution of the Parliament of 1621

    HISTORY, Issue 279 2000
    Brennan C. Pursell
    Letters written by Count Gondomar reveal that King James I devised a secret plan to dissolve the parliament of 1621 before it was recalled for a second session. Because of the escalating war in the Holy Roman Empire, James faced a belligerent parliament in England which pressured him to mount an effective defence of the Lower Palatinate against Spanish and imperial forces. James resisted and decided instead to maintain his rapport with Spain, and therefore it became necessary to sacrifice the parliament of 1621. Motivated by a genuine desire for peace, the king provoked a confrontation with the House of Commons in order to give him a pretext for dissolving parliament. [source]