To What Extent Is the House of Commons Effective in Carrying Out Its Various Functions?

716 WordsJan 19, 20133 Pages
House of Commons Past Paper C) To what extent is the House of Commons effective in carrying out its various functions? The House of Commons has many functions including those of passing effective legislation, representing the views of the people they represent and holding the government to account to ensure that all decisions made are based purely upon the desire to benefit the public and to scrutinise all the actions of the executive. The House of Commons operates under a Whips system, whereby appointed MPs ensure that all members of a particular party vote in favour of their leaders decisions. This can prevent MPs from operating independently of their party and can impede the scrutiny of government as MPs are likely to vote for…show more content…
However, this only occurs in a very short space of time and due to the vast media attention this event attracts it can often prove ineffective as it is too short and generalised, with both parties occasionally reduced to insulting the other rather than discussing important points on policy. The government is also held to account through select committees who can request to send for 'persons, papers and records' to question and hold government ministers to account. However, attendance is not compulsory and although they are obliged, they are not compelled to answer questions. Since the House of Commons is elected by the British public, one of its main functions is that of representing the electorate. Collectively, MPs represent the country as a whole, although despite representing a single constituency this does not necessarily mean that MPs will vote according to the desires of their constituents. The link between the constituency and the MP helps to resolve grievances and allow the people to feel that they have a say in the laws that will ultimately affect their lives the most. It is also important that to fairly represent the views of all citizens there be a wide range of political ideologies and interests. The MP elected can choose to vote against the opinions of those who elected them once in the Commons but this is rare and there is generally a good
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