Westminster Model of British Government Sample Essay

Strong nucleus executive- with a party leader. who besides serves as Prime Minister. and curates. who are chosen by the PM to organize a cabinet to run the executive. ? Two-party system based on individual member constituencies- parties are strong and nationalised. viing for the same issue on a countrywide graduated table ? Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition- mentioning to the political party with the 2nd largest figure of seats in the House of Commons which are invited by the monarchy to set up the Shadow Cabinet ? Parliamentary sovereignty- the belief that the legislative organic structure is supreme above all other authorities establishments. There is no higher authorization beyond parliament. although. theoretically. the sovereign has power to fade out parliament and the victor of the general elections seeks her permission to set up a authorities

Government are held accountable through the agencies of elections and parliamentary oversight- which is carried out with backbench rebellions in the bulk party. Choice Committees size uping sections. parliamentary audit and the Lords revising function ? Focus on institutions- the regulations. processs and formal administration of the authorities. These operate in a machinery mode. at the disposal of the parliamentary bulk ? Power centralised- with policy doing on a countrywide graduated table and comparatively weak local authoritiess ? Accountability through elections- every 4/5 old ages. The population hold the authorities accountable and local components hold their local MP’s accountable.

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Whilst this has been the traditional position as to how British political relations has operated. new theories and positions have challenged the premises made by the Westminster Model.

Yusuf- Strengths of the Model

Failings of the Model
Some believe that the PM is going excessively powerful- it is alleged that there is a ‘presidentialisation’ of policy devising and that the Westminster Model concentrates excessively much power in the custodies of the executive

The WM faces a challenge. As Philip Norton describes. ‘recent decennaries have seen the eroding of the WM through atomization and isolation. Atomization has occurred as a effect of major constitutional changes… isolation has topographic point as a consequence of a greater presidentialisation of political relations and of ( public ) ignorance of government’- therefore proposing that the WM has no twenty-first century usage ? A figure of groups have demanded political reform proposing that there is discontent with the WM- e. g. Charter88. a British force per unit area group which advocated constitutional and electoral reform on the footing of a current deficiency of a written fundamental law ? Is the bipartisan system expressed by the WM outdated? Dunleavy ( 2005 ) believes that the traditional bipartisan system ‘can no longer suit what electors want to speak and ballot about’

After come ining the EU in 1973. it is has been suggested that parliamentary sovereignty has been lost and overall power has been ceded upwards. This was acknowledged by Rhodes in his Differentiated Model. when he discussed the thought of a ‘hollowed-out state’ . The European Government can now outline statute law which becomes multinational policy and spans all degrees of authorities. The tenseness between EU and parliamentary sovereignty has late been represented as the EU attempted to change UK jurisprudence which would intend that the prohibition on captives voting would be lifted in conformity with EU human rights statute law. Justice Secretary. Chris Grayling. province. ‘it remains the instance that parliament is sovereign… it remains enforce unless and until parliament decide to alter it’ and MP Neil Parish stated- ‘why on Earth should it be European tribunals which overrule us? ’ Therefore. the opposition of MP’s suggest that they still feel that they have the power to make up one’s mind on statute law. proposing that the WM is still indispensable and that it is incorrect to assume that power has ceded upwards. ? Nevertheless. globalization could besides cut down parliamentary sovereignty- another facet of Rhode’s hollowing-out thesis.

It creates economic bounds for parliament. in that they are under force per unit area to put attractive revenue enhancement rates and flexible working patterns in order to pull investing from MNC’s. ? The Westminster narrowly focuses on the formal establishments of the political process- and ignors informal facets. such as involvement groups. It is clear that persons play a portion in influencing authorities policy. as was apparent in the ‘Citizen Audit’ Programme at Sheffield University which found that. ?’s of people had been involved in political activities. 22 million had signed a request and 2. 5 million took portion in a public presentation ? Focuses excessively much on establishments instead than on behavior and processes- so. it is of import to concentrate on procedures. such as voting behavior. as they can make explanatory theoretical accounts which can help the development of policy devising processes ? Focuses excessively much on the elite and on cardinal political establishments of the province. instead than all facets of the political procedure. Andrew Gamble argues that political relations should be understood in footings of all facets of societal dealingss. such as gender. race. category and so on. instead than an activity centred on authorities establishments

The WM ignores the function of political orientation and underlying thoughts which shape political processes- whereas W. H. Greenleaf acknowledged the importance of political orientation in British political relations. believing that there is an ideological clang between 2 doctrines- Bolshevism. which seeks for a corporate good and stresses the importance of a strong authorities. and individualism/libertarianism which stresses single rights and limited authorities. He believed that these opposing inclinations help to explicate the development of British political relations over the past centuries. ? Dominant executive justified as a necessary agencies of guaranting effectual authorities. Marxists argue that such a system merely reinforces the power of the wealthy and exaggerates inequality.

Power may non be concentrated into the custodies of the executive. Smith ( 1999 ) questioned ‘who holds power? ’ . he claimed that power is dispersed and there must be cooperation for purposes to be achieved instead than the premise of the WM which suggests that the power is concentrated within a strong executive ? Is it outdated? Unlike other European provinces. the UK’s political development has mostly been retained in its mediaeval roots. even the construct of the crown-in-parliament has been retained even though the personal function of the sovereign in authorities has ended Decision

Does it confront a challenge?
Possibly we should hold with Andrew Gamble. who believed that ‘the Westminster Model has weakened but it has non disappeared. nor has it been replaced by a coherent alternative’ ( p419 )


? ‘The Westminster Models and the Distinctiveness of British Politics’ .
Dunleavy. P. Developments in British Politicss 8 ? McAnulla. S. British Politicss: A Critical Introduction. chapters 1 & A ; 2 ? ‘Studying British Government: Reconstructing the Research Agenda’ Bevir. M. and Rhodes. R. . British Journal of Politics and International Relations. 1:2 ( 1999 ) ? ‘Pressure Groups’ . Jones. B. Politicss UK ( 5th edition ) ? hypertext transfer protocol: //www. bbc. co. uk/news/uk-20451031 – accessed 12/12/12 ? ‘Understanding the British Constitution’ . Prosser. T. Political Studies. 44 ( 1996 ) ? ‘Theories of British Politics’ . Gamble. A. Political Studies. 38 ( 1990 )


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