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Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Hairyloon » Sat Aug 13, 2016 6:34 pm

As I understand it, the Fixed Term Parliament Act allows for an early election if there is a vote of no confidence, or if a motion is passed with the support of 2/3 of the House.
Clearly the latter is a higher bar, so what is to stop a government from claiming to have no confidence in itself in order to?
Aside from good practice, decency and good sense obviously.
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Sat Aug 13, 2016 7:06 pm

Nothing.

The Fixed Term Parliaments Act ought more properly to be called the Coalition Protection Act. A Government with a working majority will never have much trouble calling an election when it pleases. So it has to resort to a bit of constitutional tomfoolery to no-confidence itself. So what? It's no more ridiculous than much Parliamentary frippery, and would soon be forgotten when the election was underway.
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby atticus » Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:19 pm

A government with a majority in the Commons can repeal or suspend that Act.
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:23 pm

Indeed, though it might need to resort to the Parliament Act to do so.
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby dls » Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:40 am

By the time such an Act had fought its way (if that proved necessary) through both houses would not the repeal be of help only to a future government?
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:54 am

Yes. If the Government relied on the Parliament Act to repeal the FTPA it would be stretching the definition of an early election.

I think it much more practical for the Government to challenge the Opposition to vote in favour of an early election. It might well not be necessary to no-confidence itself; the 2/3 majority may well be achievable. If it does come down to that, it is no more odd for the Government to vote that it has no confidence in itself than it would be for the Opposition to try to do the opposite.
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Hairyloon » Sun Aug 14, 2016 12:19 pm

Smouldering Stoat wrote:If it does come down to that, it is no more odd for the Government to vote that it has no confidence in itself than it would be for the Opposition to try to do the opposite.

So we would have both sides of the house lying in opposite directions...
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Re: Early Elections and the Fixed Term Parliament Act.

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:02 pm

Smouldering Stoat wrote:I think it much more practical for the Government to challenge the Opposition to vote in favour of an early election. It might well not be necessary to no-confidence itself; the 2/3 majority may well be achievable.


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