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Flashcards in Public Controls Deck (12)
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What may be recognised as public controls?

(a) Public Petitions - getting parliament to debate on an issue
(b) Strikes and protests
(c) General Elections
(d) Referendums


What piece of legistlation regulates the calling of a general election?

The Fixed Term Parliament Act 2011


When do General elections take place?

Every five years, the first thursday in May, unless called early?


When may a General Election be called early?

Under s.2 of the Fixed Term Parliament Act 2011
(a) where a Resolution calling for early election is passed by House of Commons by two-thirds majority
(b) Motion of no confidence in Government – simple majority in House of Commons


What happens directly after a motion of no confidence in the Government?

(a) 14 days is given to see if the Government can win a vote of confidence
prevents “ambush” forcing election, allows time for reshuffle of coalition if hung Parliament or for reconciliation on key issues


What is the simple defintion of referendum?

A direct vote on a specific question


Are referendum results binding?

No, with exception to the AV referendum in 2011, referendums are the majority of the time advisory


Which piece of legislation regulates referendums in the UK?

Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000, Part VII


What is the main reason for referendums being advisory?

Due to Parliamentary Sovereignity, that being Parliament is the supreme legal authority, it is not possible for referendums to be binding.


How is a referendum called?

In the past there were no rules on when or for what issues a referendum must be held;
(a) For government to decide - authorised by Act of Parliament
(b) For major constitutional changes, but inconsistent

Now the European Union Act 2011 regulates when a referendum is held;
(a) Requires referendum before ratification of some changes to EU treaties


What are there advantages of referendums?

(a) Confers legitimacy
(b) Acceptance
(c) Builds consensus
(d) Informs citizens
(e) Resolves disputes
(f) Reduces dependence
(g) Decision making quality
(h) Entrenches changes


What are the disadvantages of referendums?

(a) Expensive
(b) Delay
(c) Can undermine legitimacy
(d) Not binding
(e) Abdicate responsibility