2.3 The prime minister and cabinet

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Political leadership
A general term referring to all individuals who hold some power within a political system. It refers not only to government, but also to leading members of other parties and political associations.
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Cabinet government
A system of government where the cabinet is the central policy making body.
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Collective responsibility
In the UK all cabinet decisions must be collectively supported by all members of the government, at least in public. It also implies that the whole government stands or falls, as one, on the decisions made by the cabinet.
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Individual ministerial responsibility
The convention that a minister should resign if their department makes a serious political or personal error. In practice, this usually means that a minister is responsible to Parliament and must face questioning and criticism.
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Presidentialism
A tendency for PMs to behave in a manner similar to a president, particularly a US president. It suggest the PM is claiming a separate source of authority, is very much a policy leader and has their own sources of advice.
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Accountability
A political principle which suggests that an individual or an institution has to account for what it does and its policies. Thus, in the UK, MPs are accountable to their constituents and the government is accountable to Parliament.
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Civil service neutrality
The constitutional principle in the UK that civil servants must retain political neutrality, must give neutral advice to ministers and should not become involved in party politics.
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Open government
A principle and an aspiration that the processes of government should be made as open to the public and parliamentary scrutiny as is possible and reasonable.
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Card 2

Front

A system of government where the cabinet is the central policy making body.

Back

Cabinet government

Card 3

Front

In the UK all cabinet decisions must be collectively supported by all members of the government, at least in public. It also implies that the whole government stands or falls, as one, on the decisions made by the cabinet.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

The convention that a minister should resign if their department makes a serious political or personal error. In practice, this usually means that a minister is responsible to Parliament and must face questioning and criticism.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

A tendency for PMs to behave in a manner similar to a president, particularly a US president. It suggest the PM is claiming a separate source of authority, is very much a policy leader and has their own sources of advice.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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