Relations and disputes with Parliament: James' First Parliament (1604-1611)

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The Buckinghamshire election (1604)
MPs learned that the election of Francis Goodwin as MP for Buckinghamshire had been annulled by the Court of Chancery (a prerogative court) on the grounds that he had broken the law by having two outstanding summons for debt

  • A second election was held, and Privy Councillor John Fortescue was elected in his place; many MPs saw this as an attempt to extend royal influence over Parliament, and the House of Commons voted to reinstate Goodwin
  • James believed that the House of Commons was acting illegally in allowing an outlaw to sit as MP, and stated that all disputed elections should be decided by the Court of Chancery
  • James backed down and suggested that both Goodwin and Fortescue be dismissed and a new election be held, acknowledging the House of Commons' right to judge some election disputes

The Shirley Case (1604)
In 1604,


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