other modern states, like the United States for example, the United
Kingdom does not have a written or ‘Codified’ constitution, this puts the uk
with a very small group of other countries who also do not have what is
considered a codified constitution (Israel, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia (though
the basic law of Saudi Arabia states that the Qur’an is the constitution, San
Marino and Canada also lack a single document which outline a constitution). However,
the UK does have what is called an uncodified constitution, meaning that it is
spread among many separate documents as oppose to just a single one. The
Constitution of the UK is built upon Acts of parliament, court judgement and
other legal principles.
An issue with
having a codified constitution is that it can cause conflict with an evolving culture.
For example, there is a lot of talk over the need for change to the second
amendment of the U.S constitution (the right of the people to keep and bear
this was written in 17872.
Since being drafted and signed much has changed with reference to the
availability of firearms and the public view of the need and use of firearms. A
large amount of the argument is to do with the large increase in gun crime in the
U.S. The issue is the U.S government has a lot of trouble with whether they can
or otherwise should make changes as doing so may make the power of the
constitution appear weaker.
It is said that
a codified constitution would make it clear and understandable for the to know
what rules and regulations the government is accountable to. Some say that it
is too easy foe governments to implement legislation simply for their own
agenda without reasonable or obvious limitations.
rules which are part of the UKs constitution do not exist legally at all, and
simply rely on unwritten understanding or traditions.
constitution should be intelligible and accessible to all, not just the political/
“”” Even for parliamentarians
and experts some constitutional rules operating as unwritten conventions remain
unclear or ambiguous, including some of serious national importance. For
example, there is a debate over the existence and scope of any constitutional
rule that parliamentary approval is necessary before the government enters into
armed conflict abroad or starts arming opposition groups in foreign countries.
On such matters, there should be clarity which a codified written constitution
would provide. “””
In a democracy the people, not Parliament, are sovereign. The idea of
‘parliamentary sovereignty’ emanates to a large extent from the seventeenth
century, signifying the supremacy of an Act of Parliament over the Crown’s
prerogative after the Civil War and Glorious Revolution of 1688. It is an
untenable doctrine today that there are no limitations at all on what
Parliament can legislate about, however repugnant, totalitarian or unpopular.
In practice, parliamentary sovereignty is wielded by the government of the day
and not Parliament as such. Parliamentary sovereignty is an anachronism in the
democratic era, and needs replacing by a written constitution that expresses
the sovereignty of the people and circumscribes the powers and duties of
members of Parliament in both Houses. “””
fully codified constitution would build peoples’ confidence in the political
system by showing a clear structure of controls and safeguards that ensure
their integrity and standards.”
written constitution would not mean losing Britain’s sense of history. Any
historic institutions and ceremonies of past centuries that remain valuable for
today, including the monarchy, can simply be codified into a written
constitution but with clarity over their modern roles, duties and functions.”””
is less chance of conflict within a single document than having several
different sources of information.
constitution of the uk can be thought to be made up of many different
documents, some fundamentals can be seen in documents such as the Magna Carta
1215, the Bill of Rights 1689 and the Human Rights Act 1998
the absence of any national crisis or catalyst making a written constitution
necessary, it is idle to pretend that the main political parties could ever
agree on the precise contents of a written constitution, even if all were to
support the principle and desirability of codifying the constitution. Not only
are the parties by their nature adversarial in outlook, constantly wanting to
court popularity in media, scoring points over the other or embarrassing them,
but there are sharp differences in ideological outlook (Europe, social rights,
etc.) that would prove stumbling blocks to completion of the work, particularly
if any substantive changes (a Bill of Rights, House of Lords reform, etc.) were
proposed at the same time. There is therefore little point in considering the