Mina Wrath ‘The UK constitution is no longer fit for purpose’. Discuss. (40 marks) A constitution is the concept that a political system is governed by a constitution and that political institutions are bound by constitutional rules which are binding. In the ELK, we have an unconfined constitution, which is a set of constitutional rules that exist, but are not contained in a single document. Thus the rules do not have one single source, but a myriad of different sources. It also implies that constitutional rules are not entrenched or safeguarded and therefore can be changed by parliament.
Its flexibility arising from its unconfined, entrenched nature, means it can adapt to circumstances. This was shown clearly when the May 2010 election produced an indecisive result. There were no fixed constitutional rules to deal with the circumstances that emerged. The Cabinet Secretary, Gus O’Donnell, had drawn up some draft procedures for the possibility of a hung parliament. His plan worked well and the new coalition government was installed with relatively little disruption or conflict. This emphasizes that the British constitution can be easily changed to react to changing circumstances I. It is pragmatic, because it is neither codified nor entrenched. Thus, the LIKE constitution is fit for purposes as it allows for a pragmatic and adaptable society. The UK constitution is highly traditional and has stood the test of time. The fact that Britain the has never suffered a violent revolution or major political unrest since the Civil war in the 17 century suggests that the constitution has enduring qualities. In addition, it contains traditional elements such as the House of Lords and the monarchy; helping to maintain public support for the system.
Thus far, it has been proven that the UK constitution is fixed and steady enough to be successful in fulfilling its purpose. Furthermore, the UK has enjoyed ma NY years Of stable government which suggests the constitution is effective. This cannot be said of many modern states which have strong, codified constitutions. Moreover, the ‘conservative’ arguments suggests a change to the constitution would have unknown cones sequences. The constitution ensures that Parliament, and therefore the government, can act decisively, as they are unrestricted by excessive constitutional restraints. Although it provides for a strong decisive government, e. . Anti terrorism, essentially, it causes the government to be more accountable for their decisions. For instance, one of the components that make up the UK constitution is one of its sources; historical principles and authoritative works which have become effectively binding because they have been established over a long period of time. A recent development, the rule of law, establishes the principles of equal rights for citizens and that government is itself limited by legal limitations. Thus, the UK constitution is able to effectively fulfill its purposes through its sources and nature.
However, the constitution does not conform to the modern democratic world. The fact that the constitution is unconfined means that many people are ignorant of it. This may result in political apathy and lack of support for the political system. The loss of public confidence in politics may be partly due to a lack of codified constitutional principles. Furthermore, the existence of prerogative powers is fundamentally undemocratic. The privilege which the Prime Minister and the Queen have over others, thus the person bested with an office, is entitled to restoratives to which belong to it.