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AP Comp. Government - Great Britain (Ethel Wood)
Ethel Wood Definitions
Terms in this set (121)
A system of voting in which voters list the candidates in order of preference. The winner must obtain greater than 50% of votes. If no first-preference voters obtain 50%, the least popular candidate is eliminated and the votes for (s)he are redistributed according to the voters' next preference.
MP's of a party who have no governmental office or sit as rank-and-file opposition members. Three opportunities to voice their concerns: weekly caucus meetings, committees, or private members bills
provided for a social insurance program that made all citizens eligible for health, unemployment, pension, and other benefits.
PM: 1997-2007; Promised to create a "new labour" party and rule in a "third way", between Conservative economic policies and those of Labour's more radical past. He continued the path of Margaret Thatcher and granted political autonomy to the Bank of England (which limited the government's ability to manipulate interest rates), he also began devolution (of Scotland, Wales, and N. Ireland) Favored low taxes, tightly controlled social spending, and closer ties to Europe. American ally on war against terrorism aka Iraq War. This damaged the relationship between Britain & France. Lead to the decline support towards the Labour Party.
British Broadcasting Corporation
Developed in the Collective Consensus era, this was the TV and Radio Network in England, It was meant to be more educational and was generally kind to government officials. Government strictly regulates the BBC. (No advertisements may be sold to politicians, parties, or political causes)
British National Party
Extreme right party in Britain that formed in 1982. It is against immigration into the UK. Never been represented in Parliament. Has been overtly anti-Semitic, but now focuses on ousting Muslims. Disliked by all 3 major political parties
Replaced Tony Blair, 2007-2010. Had a hard time trying to keep Britain loyal to the Labour Party, the recession of 2008 hurt his standing, lost to David Cameron in 2010. Not articulate and reserved personality, led to low approval ratings.
Prime Minister since 2010. Next election is 2015. He had the "Big Society" Vision: "energized by grassroots volunteers and private organizations, no longer harnessed by big government."
emphasizes greater roles of private companies, charities, and employee-owned cooperatives, argument that British state has become too big, impersonal and monolithic, wants to give more power to local councils
meetings of people from the same area or of like mind, the beginnings of Britain's political parties
Consists of the Prime Minister & minister, each which head a major bureaucracy of the government. Cabinet members are party leaders in Parliament chosen by prime minister.
political culture characterized a belief in the legitimacy of their regime and a trust in the government and limited involvement, citizens demonstrate restraint in their demands on the government. Some theorists believe is most conducive to democracy (116)
The controversial clause in the Labour Party manifesto that called for nationalization of all British industry. This clause was eliminated by Party leader Tony Blair as part of his realignment to "New Labour," to show the moderation of this party to the center, during the early 1990's.
Leader of the Liberal Democrats since 2007. His party is underrepresented in Parliament compared to the number of votes they received. Formed a coalition government with the Conservatives. He is the deputy Prime Minister and Lord President of the Council, with special responsibility for political and constitutional reform in the coalition government.
When two or more parties join together to form a majority in a national legislature. This form of government is quite common in the multiparty systems of Europe.
The center of policymaking in the British political system. PM has the responsibility of shaping decisions into policy
both the Labour and the Conservative parties supported the development of a modern welfare system; lasted until the late 1970s
in a parliamentary system, the concept that all cabinet members agree on policy decisions and that all will be responsible for the results
Confederation of Business Industries
UK's leading business organization; incorporated by the Royal charter; mission is to promote the conditions in which businesses of all sizes and sectors in the UK can compete and prosper for the benefit of all (limits the Trade Union Congress' wage demands in exchange for 3% reduction in income tax rates)
a political party in Great Britain which developed from the Tories in the 1830s, One of the two major parties in the UK, it is generally more right wing, and more towards free-markets and the upper classes, advocates a mixed economy and encourages property owning. Now is split between traditional wing (noblesse oblige) and "Thatcherites" (roll back government controls and move to a full free market); tend to see the EU as a threat to British sovereignty.
"Constitution of the Crown"
the "constitution" of Britain that evolved over time
1. important documents
2. common law
vast cultural differences and varieties in ethnicites, races, and tribes inhabiting the same nation or country
Democratic Unionist Party
led by protestant clergymen, The Protestant Party in Northern Ireland that is for keeping Northern Ireland in the UK
the delegation of authority, transfer of powers and responsibilities from the federal government to the states (or central to a regional government)
the English Bill of Rights
This document list rights retained by Parliament, not by individual citizens. William and Mary signed this document in 1688, giving important policymaking power to Parliament, including the power of the purse.
English Civil War
A conflict between the supporters of the king, Charles I, & supporters of Parliament, Roundheads. Parliament won & king was executed. Oliver Cromwell then took over the country.
strict conservatives who want to roll back government controls and move to a full free market
People opposed to the UK's membership in the EU and the expansion of the EU's power.
"first-past-the-post" voting system
The "first past the post" voting system is the election process for representatives in the House of Commons; it means winner take all. Therefore, the candidate who receives the most votes is elected and there is no need for a majority nor an element of proportional representation.
the Glorious Revolution
The English Parliament drove out an absolute monarch (James II) and replaced him with two constitutional monarchs (William & Mary). William & Mary agreed to written restrictions on their power by signing the Bill of Rights.
Good Friday Agreement
a practical peace agreement reached by the major parties in Northern Ireland with the British and Irish governments. Set up a Northern Ireland Assembly. agreement to end the conflict in Northern Ireland signed in 1998 by Protestants and Catholics. Form of devolution.
when debating, the "government" consists of the MP's on the first rows of the majority party side (they are the most important policy makers)
the belief in or the policy of advancing toward a goal by gradual, often slow stages; this process helps explain the transition in policy making power from the King to Parliament
members of the House of Lords appointed by the monarch and whose title automatically passes down to their sons.
The government of a colony, dependent country, or region by its own citizens. Self-government in local matters by a city or county that is part of a national government
House of Commons
A person who sits in the House of Commons is called a Member of Parliament (MP). The House of Commons has 650 members (MPs) who have been elected by local residents to represent an area of the country in Parliament. Each MP represents one of 650 constituencies (areas) in the UK and is a member of a political party. There is a two-party system. Set up (137)
House of Lords
House of Lords is made up of people who have inherited family titles and those who have been given titles because of their outstanding work in one field or another. There are 675 members of the Lords. A person who sits in the House of Lords is a peer. The main job of the House of Lords is to 'double check' new laws to make sure they are fair and will work. (139)
a parliament in which no single party has majority control in the House of Commons after the elections. Leads to a coalition parliament. (ex. 2010 election, Conservs & Lib. Dem)
the feeling of separation from the continent of Europe. caused Britain to have a cautious attitude towards participation in the EU. Britain is somewhat insular by not adopting the euro & maintaining the pound.
Irish Republican Army
a militant organization of Irish nationalists who used terrorism and guerilla warfare in an effort to drive British forces from Northern Ireland and achieve a united independent Ireland. In 1949, Ireland became independent, except Northern Ireland.
Margaret Thatcher, the ex-PM of England in the 1980's. Known to be very tough, decisive, and efficient. Executed business-like tactics. Cut taxes, small government, trickle down economy. She was "capable and firm."
the economic theories of John Maynard Keynes who advocated government monetary and fiscal programs intended to stimulate business activity and increase employment. The government must manage the economy by spending more money when in a recession and cutting spending when there is inflation.
created in 1906 to represent the rights of the newly-enfranchised working man, with the help of trade unions to represent the interests of the urban working class. Was partially defined by the "Clause 4." Current leader is Ed Miliband.
five members of the House of Lords who serve as Britain's highest court of appeals (until 2009)
Liberal Democratic Alliance
aka LibDems. in the 1983 and 1987 elections, the Liberals and Social Democrats formed an alliance (formally merged in 1989), establishing the Liberal Democratic Party.
Goal - to establish a strong party in between labour (left) and conservative (right). Campaigned for proportional representation (to give them a better chance of getting seats) and for a US style Bill of Rights. Party that garnered 26% of popular vote in the 1980s but, because of GB's plurality system, never got more than 62 seats in the House of Commons.
A political or social philosophy advocating the freedom of the individual, parliamentary systems of government, nonviolent modification of political, social, or economic institutions to assure unrestricted development in all spheres of human endeavor, and governmental guarantees of individual rights and civil liberties. Economic theory advocating free competition and a self-regulating market and the gold standard
distinguished members of the society who are given lifetime appointments to the house of lords
In this type of government everyone, including all authority figures, must obey laws. Constitutions, statements of rights, or other laws define the limits of those in power so they cannot take advantage of the elected, appointed, or inherited positions.
the party that does not win the majority in the elections. Role that the party out of power plays, highlighting its objections to policies and priorities of the government in power
In 1215 King John signed this document, agreeing to consult nobles before he made important political decisions, especially those regarding taxes. This forms the basis of limited government that placed restrictions on the power of monarchs.
A political theory holding that in a democracy, the government ought to do what the majority of the people want.
Members of Parliament
Represents an area known as a riding; belongs to a political party; important ones become ministers in the cabinet; lesser ones are called backbenchers
Took over the labour party after Gordon Brown resigned. Under his rule the labour party continued to lose support. Miliband has political preferences left of center.
unofficial statistic that is the sum of monthly inflation and the unemployment rate
the government directing the economy and nationalizing major industries without giving up basic principles of capitalism such as private ownership of property.
Areas that had once been many nations that are now united under one government. Britain's boundaries include England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland which have been different nations in the past but are united under one government today; different dialects of the English language and religious differences cause conflict
interest groups take the lead and sometimes dominate the state; describes what often happens in British system of interest group pluralism. The greatest influence is through "quangos," policy advisory boards appointed by the government
revival of classic liberal values. supports low levels of government regulation, taxation, and social expenditures and the protection of individual property rights. Move towards a free market economy & denationalization of industries.
the duty of upper classes to take responsibility for the welfare of the lower classes
Organization for Petroleum Exporting Countries. an organization of countries formed in 1961 to agree on a common policy for the production and sale of petroleum
Oxford and Cambridge Universities. nearly half of all parliament members earn higher education there. Since WWII, scholarships for Oxbridge have been available so more working & middle-class youths may attend
Parliament is where politicians (MPs) meet to decide laws and make decisions for the United Kingdom. 1.pass laws, 2.to provide, by voting for taxation, the means of carrying on the work of government, 3.to scrutinise government policy and administration, including proposals for expenditure, 4.to debate the major issues of the day.
made up of three parts: The Queen, The House of Lords, The House of Commons
A form of government in which the chief executive (prime minister) is the leader whose party holds the most seats in the legislature after an election or whose party forms a major part of the ruling coalition. Executive branch & legislative are fused together b/c prime minister & cabinet are leaders in parliament. Separation of power does not exist. Judicial review has no role in interpreting the "Constitution of the crown"
nationalist political party in Wales; advocates the establishment of a Welsh state that is independent of the UK. More rights for the Welsh people, including use of the Welsh language
plurality voting system
A voting system in which the candidate who receives the largest portion of the votes, not necessarily the majority, wins the seat. Reason why Lib. Dems don't have a good representation in Parliament.
politics of protest
the tendency to disagree openly and sometimes violently with the government, many believe it has become more acceptable in Britain, reflects increased qualities of a democratic society in the UK
"First among equals" & stands at the apex of the unitary government. Not directly elected by the people, but is a member of parliament & leader of the majority party. SEE PG 135!!!
an election system in which each party running receives the proportion of legislative seats corresponding to its proportion of the vote.
quasi-autonomous nongovernmental organizations or policy advisory boards appointed by the government (Quasi-nongovernmental organization). These organizations have considerable amount of influence over policy making in health care, education and housing.
weekly; A portion of debate in parliament in which the prime minister and his cabinet must defend themselves against attack from the opposition (party out of power), and sometimes from members of their own party
Legitimacy based on a system of laws and procedures that are highly institutionalized. Belief that the government has the right to rule based on a system of well-established laws and procedures; Britain's political system has beaten based on this since the end of the 17th century.
The name given to the political process in which the general public votes on an issue of public concern. A state-level method of direct legislation that gives voters a chance to approve or disapprove proposed legislation or a proposed constitutional amendment.
districts in which incumbents win by margins of 55% or more
Scottish National Party
centre-left political party which campaigns for Scottish independence, most popular party in Scotland. The Party that wants Scotland to be an independent nation outside of the UK
the official leadership of the opposition party that "shadows" the cabinet. in debate, sits on opposition side facing the cabinet members
the political arm of the IRA. An Irish republican political movement founded in 1905 to promote independence from England and unification of Ireland
complete unity in a group or organization
Speaker of the House
Presides over debates. Supposed to be objective & often not a member of the majority party. Job is to allow all to speak, but not let things get out of hand
Conservatives select Margaret Thatcher as their leader. Her stance towards the economy & politics gained the Conservatives power in 1979. She blamed the weak economy of the socialist policies. She privatized business & industry, cut back on social welfare programs, strengthen national defense, got tough with labor unions, & returned to market force controls on the economy. She reflected neoliberalism. Her supporters called her the "Iron Lady," but some critics believed her policies made the economy worse & further divided the country.
the third way
a centrist alternative to the old labour party on the left and the conservative party on the right. (Tony Blair)
support the King. First appeared under Charles II. Became the conservative party.
Trade Union Congress
a federation of trade unions in the United Kingdom, representing the majority of trade unions. represents a coalition of unions that had a great deal of clout because the government often consulted them on important decisions.
family inheritance- queens, kings, etc.
UK Independence Party
slightly more popular than the British National Party, this party is mainly opposed to British membership in the EU.
political authority centralized (London) Decisions made by central government, both laws by Parliament & regulations by the bureaucrats in Whitehall, are binging on all public agencies.
"vote of no confidence"
where a majority of parliamentary members vote to remove a prime minister from office. Vote taken by a legislature as to whether its members continue to support the current prime minister. Depending on the country, a vote of no confidence can force the resignation of the prime minister and/or lead to new parliamentary elections.
a government that undertakes responsibility for the welfare of its citizens through programs in public health and public housing and pensions and unemployment compensation etc.
opposing the King, first appeared under Charles II. Became the Liberal party.
If a country's percentage of labor force in the industrial sector decreases and the percentage in the tertiary services sector increases, the values that shape the political culture are probably moving toward
Advanced democracies are most likely to vary in terms of their promotion of
plurality electoral systems
Which of the following is the best description of Britain's constitution?
Britain's constitution is based on documents, common law, and customs.
By gradually extending political rights, including voting, Britain discouraged the development within its borders of
Which of the following provides the best evidence that devolution is occuring within the British political system?
the revival of the Scottish parliament
The largest non-European immigrant group in Britain today is composed of
The influx of eastern Europeans into Britain after 2004 was stimulated primarily by
the admission of several eastern European countries into the EU
British voters in which of the following areas would be least likely to vote for a Labour MP?
Which of the following is NOT a linkage institution in Britain?
the Supreme Court
The alternate vote called to referendum by the Liberal Democrats in 2011 proposed changes that would put more emphasis on
The coalition government that formed after the election of 2010 drew its leadership from the
Conservatives and Liberal Democrats
Which of the following are most influenced by the value of noblesse oblige?
the traditional wing of the Conservative Party
Which of the following political parties won 23% of the popular vote in the election of 2010 but only wom 57/650 seats in the House of Commons?
Liberal Democrat Party
In Britain, quangos influence policymaking in their role as
interest groups based on neo-corporatism
- Interest groups dominate the state (GB)
- State decides interest groups (China, Russia)
The policymaking power of Britain's Supreme Court is limited mainly by
the principle of parliamentary sovereignty
Which of the following is NOT a characteristic of the British political system?
separation of powers between the branches of government
Which of the following best describes the geographical location of policymaking power in Britain?
Britain has a unitary state but is now developing some power to sub-governments
"Collective responsibility" best describes the policymaking process of the British
A coalition cabinet is unusual in British politics because it
includes leaders of more than one political party
Which of the following is the most significant check on the power of the British cabinet?
Which of the following is NOT a power of MPS in the House of Commons?
override decisions made by the cabinet
What is unusual about the configuration of the House of Commons after the 2010 elections as illustrated in the chart above?
Liberal Democrats sit on the majority side of the chamber
By tradition, if the majority party loses a vote of confidence, what must happen next?
The government resigns and elections for new MPs are held
The main objective of the Labour government's reorganization of the House of Lords between 1999 and 2010 was to
create a mostly-elected chamber
Which of the dollowing is most likely to be an expert in a particular public policy area?
a member of the House of Lords
Which of the following would be most likely to wasnt to dismantle the National Health Service?
Which of the following does the exposure in 2009 of the parliamentary scandal reveal about the British political system?
Transparency levels are still high
The international event that most seriously challenged the popularity of the Blair government was
the Iraqi war
Which of the following reflects Britain's insularity in its dealings with the European Union?
Britain has not adopted the euro as a common currency.
The creation of the office of mayor and a general assembly for London and the Scottish and Welsh assemblies are all a part of a trend in the British political system toward
Essay Question: Devolution - How has it affected the UK?
- current issue, won't go away
- the dispersing of power to lower gov't
- ex. N. Ireland and Scottland
- Good Friday Agreement
- Home Rule - Ireland's right to govern itself
Essay Question: Why is GB stable?
- Gradualism - change is occuring
- Tradition - Traditional Legitimacy
- Oldest Democracy
- Model of Political Stability
Essay Question: Role of the Social Class
- Nobless Oblige
- Social Clevages (Poor North, Rich South)
- House of Lords vs. House of Commons
Essay Question: Who governs the UK? Where is the authority? What power do they use?
- PM = a lot of power
- House of Commons - Rubber Stamp
- Cabinet - Masterminds behind legislation
- Quango - Influence/Carry Out Policy
Essay Question: Parliamentary Sovereignty
Enhances House of Commons
- HoL - Limited Power, Delay Legislation
- HoC - Pass, Debate, Carry On Legislation
- No judicial review = defer to gov't = parliamentary review
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