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Explain what is meant by the doctrine of parliamentary supremacy and briefly explain one limitation on this doctrine.

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Introduction

2a. Explain what is meant by the doctrine of parliamentary supremacy and briefly explain one limitation on this doctrine. The Parliament is the supreme law maker in the UK however there are limitations to the Parliaments power. The supremacy or sovereignty of Parliament was set up in the 17th century. The Bill of Rights was passed in 1689 which stated that Parliament was the supreme law maker. Parliamentary supremacy meant that the parliament could make or repeal any laws and could not be challenged in the courts. In our structure of government the Parliament is our highest law source in the UK and claims superiority over common case law, delegated legislation and previous Acts. ...read more.

Middle

means that the power of a Parliamentary law cannot be queried by anybody including the church, the king or queen or the courts. One parliament cannot limit the law making ability of future Parliaments therefore it is unattainable for Parliament to pass a permanent law. There are however limitations to the doctrine of parliamentary supremacy one of which is the Humans Rights Act. Before the establishment of the Human Rights Act (HRA) 1998, the UK's general public was protected by the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) 1950. The Human Rights Act 1998 was enacted in October 2008 and included the ECHR into domestic law. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Act doesn't give the Convention dominance over English law however it does call for legislation being compatible with the guidelines of the Convention where possible. It doesn't give the courts power to overrule bills that don't fit the principles however it doesn't prevent Parliament establishing laws that disagree with the Act. There is a statement in the Act that allows the Government Minister to change any act that is incompatible with the HRA. Therefore parliamentary supremacy remains. Parliamentary supremacy is not completely affected by the Humans Right Act. Government Ministers must state whether the new legislation is compatible with the HRA but no explanation is needed. ...read more.

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