Legislation at Westminster: Parliamentary Actors and Influence in the Making of British Law by Meg RussellLegislation at Westminster: Parliamentary Actors and Influence in the Making of British Law by Meg Russell

Legislation at Westminster: Parliamentary Actors and Influence in the Making of British Law

byMeg Russell, Daniel Gover

Hardcover | September 8, 2017

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The Westminster parliament is a highly visible political institution, and one of its core functions is approving new laws. Yet Britain's legislative process is often seen as executive-dominated, and parliament as relatively weak. As this book shows, such impressions can be misleading.Drawing on the largest study of its kind for more than forty years, Meg Russell and Daniel Gover cast new light on the political dynamics that shape the legislative process. They provide a fascinating account of the passage of twelve government bills - collectively attracting more than 4000 proposedamendments - through both the House of Commons and House of Lords. These include highly contested changes such as Labour's identity cards scheme and the coalition's welfare reforms, alongside other relatively uncontroversial measures. As well as studying the parliamentary record and amendments, theauthors draw from more than 100 interviews with legislative insiders.Following introductory chapters about the Westminster legislative process, the book focuses on the contribution of distinct parliamentary "actors", including the government, opposition, backbenchers, select committees, and pressure groups. It considers their behaviour in the legislative process,what they seek to achieve, and crucially how they influence policy decisions. The final chapter reflects on Westminster's influence overall, showing this to be far greater than commonly assumed. Parliamentary influence is asserted in various different ways - ranging from visible amendments to moresubtle means of changing government's behaviour. The book's findings make an important contribution to understanding both British politics and the dynamics of legislative bodies more broadly. Its readability and relevance will appeal to both specialists and general readers with interests in politics and law, in the UK and beyond.
Meg Russell is Professor of British and Comparative Politics in the Department of Political Science, University College London, where she is Director of the well-known research centre the Constitution Unit. She is widely recognized for her expertise on the UK parliament, and on legislatures more broadly, and has previously published su...
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Title:Legislation at Westminster: Parliamentary Actors and Influence in the Making of British LawFormat:HardcoverDimensions:304 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.03 inPublished:September 8, 2017Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198753829

ISBN - 13:9780198753827

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction2. Overview of the Legislative Process and Case Studies3. Government Drafting and Handling of Legislation4. The Role of the Opposition5. The Role of Government Backbenchers6. The Role of Non-party Parliamentarians7. The Role of Outside Pressure Groups8. The Role of Select Committees9. The Role of Cross-party Working10. Conclusion: Parliamentary Power and the Legislative Process