Constitution and Judiciary

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What is a codified constitution?
A set of rules written down in a single document e.g. the US constitution. It is entrenched and difficult to amend. It is fundamental law and higher than all other laws.
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What is an uncodified constitution?
An informal set of rules not recorded in a single document but found in other sources. It is not entrenched and can be changed easily. This is what the UK has. Has the status of ordinary law.
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What is the Human Rights Act and when was it passed?
The HRA was passed in 1998 and incorporates most of the rights contained within the European Convention on Human Rights into UK law. Parliament remains sovereign. It can be easily repealed.
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What is the Constitutional Reform Act?
Passed in 2005, the CRA separated the legislature and the judiciary and reduced thier fusion of power. This weakens the link between them and gives the judges more power.
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Give two sources of the British Constitution.
1.Statute law is the body of principles and law laid down in statutes (written down) e.g. The HRA, CRA, ECA. 2.Conventions are accepted rules and traditions that have evoved over time e.g. The Speaker.
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How would a British constitution regulate the conduct of government?
The government would have to work within its framework and cannot embark on changes of their own. It would also dilute powers in the executive.
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What is the quote from Paul Boateng?
"The judgels job is to judge, the government's job is to govern"
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Give 3 arguments in favour of the judge's being independent.
1.They recieve fixed salaries not subject to parliamentary approval. 2.Court proceedings are sub iudice meaning they cannot be discussed in Parliament. 3.Security of tenture - cannot be sacked.
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Give 3 arguments saying that the judges are not neutral.
1. They are from a narrow social elite. 2.They are often pro-Establishment. 3.Often support Conservatives.
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What is judicial precedent?
The doctrine of binding stare decisis is basic to the UK legal system. It is a statement made of the law by a judge in deciding a case. They have to check their case against past cases and follow the precedent set.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What is an uncodified constitution?

Back

An informal set of rules not recorded in a single document but found in other sources. It is not entrenched and can be changed easily. This is what the UK has. Has the status of ordinary law.

Card 3

Front

What is the Human Rights Act and when was it passed?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What is the Constitutional Reform Act?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Give two sources of the British Constitution.

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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