Parliamentary Sovereignty And The Rule Of Law Essay

871 Words Jan 9th, 2016 4 Pages
Parliamentary sovereignty and the rule of law are both concepts that are key to shaping the British constitution, however there is ambiguity as to which concept is the heart of the UK’s constitutional arrangement in the recent years.

Britain, to begin with, has no written constitution due to the country’s own constitutional structure’s stability. It remains uncodified, yet it’s legal sources stem from Acts of parliament, European Union law, equity and common law,. Therefore the varying powers of parliamentary sovereignty and the rule of law will be considered against these sources.

Parliamentary sovereignty has no set definition, but in Dicey’s view it meant that parliament is the supreme law making body, able to amend or repeal any legislation it wishes without its legal validity being questioned by any other body, including the executive or judicial bodies. It also cannot bind the preceding parliament or the future parliament.

To consider each principles power and their own basis within the British constitution, the rule of law needs to be defined too, but this is somewhat harder to do as it has no set definition. Different theories have attempted to define it though, and most agree with the Diceyan definition.It states that the rule of law contains three core elements - one, the law is absolutely supreme, two, everyone is equal before the law, and three, the Constitution may be found in the ordinary laws of the state.

This springs up some immediate problems - it could…
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