• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How effective is Parliament in holding the Government to account?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How effective is Parliament in holding the Government to account? Parliament is made up of The House of Lords, the House of Commons and the queen in Parliament. Parliament is the legislature, the government is the executive and the courts are the judiciary. Parliament has many roles, and one of these is holding the government to account. In The House Of Commons, there are many methods of keeping the government to account, these are, 'Standing and select committees, debates, Question time and voting. Also in the House of Lords there are methods of keeping the government to account, these are debating, delaying, amending and voting. Each of the methods inside the Commons and the Lords has limitations, and things, which make them effective in holding the government to account. Each of the methods used in helping hold the government to account has a specific job, and is there for a specific purpose. ...read more.

Middle

Question Time is also held, here the Prime Minister and ministers can be asked questions covering issues to do with policies etc, this is effective because the PM and ministers may have to explain their actions. However, the PM/Ministers know the questions in advance so they have a chance to prepare their answers so nothing is spontaneous, also back bench MP's waste time with questions praising the government, ie 'crime rates have been reduced, how have you done this?' Inside the Commons there are often votes on different issues, this means that if the Commons do not support the PM at that time there can be a 'vote-of-no-confidence', usually if this happens the PM will resign. As with many methods used in the Commons, party discipline plays a great role, so most of the governing party MP's always vote with the government, and not against it, even if they don't agree with it. ...read more.

Conclusion

When Labour came into power in 1997 as well as reforming the Commons they reformed the Lords as well. The Lords had become incredibly undemocratic, unrepresentative. Labour limited the hereditary peers to 92, and increased the amount of life peers. Overall, I think that Parliament is partially effective in holding the government to account, but there are three big limitations on parliamentary power, the government has a majority so therefore it can push through whatever legislation's' etc that it wants. The MP's etc sitting in parliament might just be in interested in furthering their own careers, and not actually pay attention to what's really happening. Also the Lord's can not prevent what the government does because of conventions past, Parliament Act, Threat of reform, and the Salisbury Convention stops the Lords. The government holds a lot of power over parliament, if the government really wants to do something, ie pass a legislation or act etc there is little that Parliament can do to stop it, unless there is a 'vote-of-no-confidence'. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Politics essays

  1. Political accountability -Parliament and the courts

    The Government subsequently replies. In their scrutiny of government departments, committees use a variety of working methods. These methods include full inquiries gathering written and oral evidence leading to a published report, a single evidence session to focus attention on a particular issue, informal seminars with experts and asking for written evidence on a minor piece of legislation.

  2. "Debates, Question Time, and Select Committees all give Parliament Teeth." Do you agree?

    What's more, there is the involvement of 'greasers', who are Government MPs who 'suck up' to the Prime Minister by asking questions that are easy to answer and improve the public appearance of the PM. Also this can be seen as simply an opportunity to 'score points' against opponents by humiliating in them in the public eye.

  1. How effective are M.P.'s at scrutinising the Government?

    As a result the Prime Minister is forced to explain and justify his policies. In spite of this the Prime Minister and his ministers don't have to answer any of the questions put forward by the opposition and other M.P.'s.

  2. To what extent does executive dominance over parliament prevent M.P.'s from carrying out their ...

    If the constituent's problem is unsatisfactorily answered from a minister the M.P. can report the matter to parliamentary ombudsman who will investigate the matter further. However many M.P.'s complain that they have insufficient resources given to them from the executive, thus undermining their role as redresser of grievances, as if

  1. Have Prior Reforms Of The Lords Been Effective And Can Anything Further Be Done ...

    Prime Minister Blair primarily favoured the loss of all hereditary peers, but, to have any chance in passing this act through parliament, especially the lords, the act had to be watered down (Guardian.co.uk April 2003 (Lords Reform)). Reform of the lords has always been an important part of Blair's party manifesto.

  2. How effective is Parliament in Controlling the Executive?

    Finally, living up to the predictable and scripted nature of Question Time, ministers may organise 'plants' in the Common's, i.e. MP's who will prompt announcements or the opportunity for self-congratulation. The House of Lords, like the House of Commons, makes Government ministers answer questions about their work.

  1. Politics and Parliament - What's it all about?

    As a result, while in the United Kingdom the century has seen the dominance of the Commons over the House of Lords, the role of Parliament as a whole has been one of sanctioning the formation of governments, providing the personnel of governments, and then subjecting them to criticism and checking.

  2. Civil Service Reform.

    people with broadly common qualities and that there was a common structure into which they would be recruited. Now there was a different approach, particularly in agencies, and a belief that each 'business' should recruit the kinds of people it needs and that senior managers should be directly involved in getting the right people into the right posts.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work