To what extent has the location of sovereignty changed in recent years

Topics: United Kingdom / Pages: 5 (1577 words) / Published: Apr 17th, 2014
To what extent has the location of sovereignty in the UK changed in recent years?
Sovereignty is in essence ultimate and unchallengeable power, in the UK sovereignty in theory lies within parliament, A.V. Dicey said that ‘no person or body is recognised by the law of England as having a right to override or set aside the legislation of Parliament’. Sovereignty was placed formally to parliament after the Bill of Rights act in 1688 when the monarch’s powers were removed. Ultimate power lies in parliament due to the fact that the electorate vote for the members of parliament in free, fair and regular elections. Two types of sovereignty exist, legal and political. Legal sovereignty is the principle that one body has the authority and right to change any law in anyway it wants to, legal sovereignty in the UK has been said to lie in Westminster Parliament. Political sovereignty is where power effectively and actively is used and implemented, in other words who holds political power and who has can influence it. For example, political sovereignty lies with the electorate at election time, but at other times lies with parliament when debating legislation and constitutional statues.

One factor which can be argued to of had the biggest effect in terms of changing where parliamentary sovereignty resides in recent years is the EU. The UK initially joined the EC in 1973 since then the EC has become the EU and has also become increasingly more powerful over the UK as time has passed, the EU could even be argued to be supreme over UK statues and the UK parliament. This is shown in the factortame case in which EU law took precedent over UK wishes, allowing Spanish fishing boats to fish in UK waters, this was the first time UK law was scrutinized and removed by courts due to EU law contradicting these laws. Furthermore, being part of the EU ultimately is a way of binding the UK governments successors partly due to the fact that if the UK left the EU there could be major

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