Ad blocker interference detected!
Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers
Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy consisting of five constituent nations: England, Scotland, Wales, Protestant-majority Northern Ireland, and Catholic-majority Southern Ireland. Each of these constituent nations has a devolved legislature and executive with the authority over most domestic affairs - the Parliament of the United Kingdom deals mostly with affairs effecting the Kingdom as a whole and all foreign affairs.
Legislative bodies of the UK
The Parliament of the United Kingdom has parliamentary sovereignty. Sir William Blackstone described this by saying that Parliament "has sovereign and uncontrollable authority in making, confirming, enlarging, restraining, abrogating, repealing, reviving, and expounding of laws, concerning matters of all possible denominations, ecclesiastical, or temporal, civil, military, maritime, or criminal … it can, in short, do every thing that is not naturally impossible." Whether this is entirely accurate or not has not been formally clarified. Parliament is the source of all authority for the devolved legislative bodies of the constituent nations. If Parliament so wished, it could revoke the Acts of Parliament creating the devolved bodies.
Parliament has two houses. The Upper House is called the House of Lords and serves as an advisory role. It can no longer veto bills from the House of Commons. The Lower House is called the House of Commons. Both Houses meet in the Palace of Westminster, the same building where the English Parliament currently meets.
Parliament can make laws concerning any aspect of the United Kingdom - the devolved bodies can annul legislation pertaining to their jurisdiction unless Parliament officially forbids it. Parliament is also the only body that can make legislation that involves international or Kingdom-wide affairs.
Devolved legislative bodies
The chief of government for England is called the First Minister to distinguish between English government and the Prime Minister of the UK. The current First Minister is John Prescott MEP, Labour Party.
The chief of government for Scotland is called the First Minister to distinguish between Scottish government and the Prime Minister of the UK. The current First Minister is Alex Salmond MSP, Scottish National Party.
The Assembly has been often prorogued by the Parliament of the United Kingdom many times. Observers in the American Union have said that the Assembly is "allowed to govern on the condition of good behavior" and that more often than not it is "prorogued for bad behavior." While this is not the technical or the official reason, tensions between those who wish to retain the status quo and those that desire unification with Southern Ireland (still part of the United Kingdom as per the Home Rule Act 1914 and Government of Ireland Act 1920) are always just below the boiling point, leading to very heated debates and votes.
The chief of government for Northern Ireland is called the First Minister to distinguish between Northern Irish government and the Prime Minister of the UK. The current First Minister is Ian Paisley MLA, Democratic Unionist Party.
The chief of government for Wales is called the First Minister to distinguish between Welsh government and the Prime Minister of the UK (Some ambiguity exists as both "First Minister" and "Prime Minister" are the same in Welsh). The current First Minister is Rhodri Morgan AM, Welsh Labour.
The Oireachtas meets in the Parliament House, in Dublin. The Dáil in reality usually meets in Leinster House (originally, Leinster House was intended as a temporary measure while the Commons Chamber was restored, but it was decided to make Leinster House the official meeting place) and only assembles in the Parliament House when in a joint session with the Senate. The Senate meets in the old House of Lords chamber.
The entire Irish government is officially referred to as the Government of Southern Ireland, or as the Rialtas na hÉireann. The chief of government is the First Minister of Southern Ireland, or the Taoiseach. The current Taoiseach is Brian Cowen TD, Fianna Fáil.
Historians continually debate whether the Irish or the British had the last laugh in the creation of an Irish government.