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Flashcards in Constitutional Reforms Deck (31)
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1

what was the HoL reform Act 1999?

-ended hereditary right to be a lord
-kept 92
-appointed life peers who were appointed on merit
- stage 2 was wholly elected HoL

2

give examples of life peers?

-Lord sugar (business)
-Lord Coe (sport)
-Lord Lloyd-Webber (culture)

3

give 3 problems solved by the HoL reform Act 1999

- removed conservative bias of house
- more representative as wider range of people - more minorities, more women, more religious
- more expertise - more legitimate house

4

in 2018, what is the makeup of the Lords?

244 conservative
187 Labour
181 cross-bench

5

why is the lords now more democratic ?

-represents wider range of society
-if PM just appointed friends would reduce legitimacy of govt

6

give 3 ways in which HoL reform Act 1999 didn't go far enough

- HoC remains superior to HoL
- failure to go through with stage 2 - HoL would have more power and reduced power of PM - could claim legitimacy
- 24 bishops + 2 archbishops - not representing other religions - we are multicultural country

7

why do commons remain superior to lords?

they are elected - more legitimacy

8

what problems did the HoL reform Act 1999 create?

- ultimately gave more power to PM - had control of every branch
- gained more lords legitimacy so more likely to challenge govt - more bellicose
- increasing in size still - nearly 1000 today

9

What is an example of the Lords challenging the govt?

- terrorism act, reduced it from 90 - 28 day detention

10

What was devolution in 1998?

- transfer of power from central govt to region - Scot & Wales
- Scotland gets tax varying powers +-3% of UK +primary legislative power
-Wales got secondary legislative power

11

What problems did devolution in 1998 solve?

- pleased strong Scottish movement in Scotland
- differing needs for different areas - decentralisation - more power closer to the people
- reducing calls for independence/ decreasing risk of UK breakup

12

why was nationalist movement in scotland pleased with devolution ?

-19 yrs of tory rule who they hadn't voted for - thatcher era
-generally voted labour
- Poll tax - thatcher tested on Scots 1yr before England

13

in what ways was devolution in 1998 not successful?

- Scottish independence referendum 2014
- limited powers to both bodies (only have devolved powers)
- wales had different settlement to Scotland
- UK law remains supreme

14

what problems did devolution create?

potentially further devolution
slows down decision making
increased costs and bureaucracy

15

give examples of further devolution

2011 Wales - primary legislative powers
2014 - scottish independence referendum

16

what was the Fixed Term Parliaments Act 2011?

- elections happen every 5 years on a fixed date
- unless 2/3 MPs vote for one

17

in what ways was Fixed Term Parliaments Act 2011 successful?

- prevented elections being called based on popularity - fairer, more democratic
- reduces power of govt, particularly PM

18

in what ways was Fixed Term Parliaments Act 2011 not successful?

- didn't prevent snap election in 2017
- 5 years is actually quite long - shorter terms would have provided more accountability
- govt saving popular policies until the end to gain popularity

19

What was the Human Rights Act 1998?

- codified fundemental rights for everyone in the UK
- comes from ECHR

20

in what ways was the Human Rights Act successful?

- protected rights better e.g. right to life, not be tortured, guarantee of fair trial etc...
- limits power of govt. , can no longer just ignore rights
- more power for judges who now have one document to interpret

21

in what ways was the Human Rights Act not successful?

- not well enough protected as no parliament is binding on any other
- potentially prioritises the rights of the few over the rights of the many
- far more challenges to govt. - rights based culture - people are far more willing to challenge + sue people

22

What was the Constitutional reform Act 2005?

- reduced power of Lord Chancellor
- created UK supreme court - opens 1 oct 2009
- set up the Judicial appointments committe (JAC) - independent body to appoint judges

23

How was the Constitutional reform Act 2005 successful?

- reduced role of Lord Chancellor - used to be in all 3 branches of govt.
- limits the executive/legislature branch of govt. by holding them accountable
-limits power of PM who can no longer have a role appointing justices

24

give an example of judiciary holding govt to account?

ginna miller

25

How was the Constitutional reform Act 2005 unsuccessful?

- supreme court is not sovereign
- only limited ways in which it could have gone further
- unelected judges with far more power than they used to have

26

What was the electoral reform 2011?

-referendum to change electoral system in UK to AV voting instead of First Past the Post

27

What were the results of the 2011 AV referendum?

- 42% turnout
- 67%/33% NO vote

28

What are the problems of FPTP?

- governments are elected on a minority of the votes cast in a general election
- leads to a lot of wasted votes - those who vote green and UKIP
- leads to many people voting tactically
- some votes have more value than others

29

What is an example of a government winning with the minority of the votes and what is it called?

- 2005, Labour won with 35.2% of the vote
- tyranny of the minority

30

What were the stats for voting with UKIP and SNP in 2015?

- UKIP 13% of vote - 1 seat
- SNP 5% of vote - 56 seats