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Parliament and the Law

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Editor(s): Alexander Horne, Gavin Drewry, Dawn Oliver

Parliament and the Law is an edited collection of essays, sponsored by the Study of Parliament Group and written by leading constitutional lawyers, practitioners and parliamentary officials, with a Foreword by Sir Ross Cranston (a Justice of the High Court and former Solicitor-General).

The book provides a wide-ranging overview of the ways in which the law applies to Parliament and considers how recent changes to our constitutional arrangements (in particular the Human Rights Act, the establishment of a Supreme Court and increasing devolution) have impacted on Parliament as an institution. It includes discussion of a number of topical issues, including: the operation of parliamentary privilege in civil and criminal law (examining the recent examples of 'super injunctions' and Members' expenses); the powers of Parliament's Select Committees; the work of Parliament's 'watchdog' Committees: the Joint Committee on Human Rights and the House of Lords Constitution Committee. It reflects on the effect of Freedom of Information on Parliament. It also discusses arguments that have been raised in favour of a new Bill of Rights for the United Kingdom and arguments for and against the continuation of the doctrine of Parliamentary sovereignty.

The book is aimed at legal academics, practitioners, political scientists, parliamentarians and parliamentary officials and others interested in the relationships between Parliament and the law.

"This book, published under the auspices of the Study of Parliament Group, is very much to be welcomed. The editors are to be applauded for their initiative [and] the various authors have a profound knowledge of Parliament's operation. The essays are a mine of information. For that reason the chapters will prove a springboard for further analysis. But the book is more than that because it raises some profound issues about Parliament's future and its relationship with other institutions of the state. Those in Parliament, whether as Members or officials, and those interested in Parliament, such as academics, public officials (including, dare I say judges), and many others besides, will all learn from it."
From the Foreword by Sir Ross Cranston FBA

Table of contents
Part I: Privilege and Conduct
1. Privilege, Exclusive Cognisance and the Law
Liam Laurence Smyth
2. Privilege and Freedom of Speech
Oonagh Gay and Hugh Tomlinson QC
3. Parliamentary Privilege and the Criminal Law
Sally Lipscombe and Alexander Horne
4. The Law and Conduct of Members of Parliament
Richard Kelly and Matthew Hamlyn
Part II: Parliament: Internal Arrangements
5. Legal Advice to Parliament
Andrew Kennon
6. Freedom of Information and Parliament
Ben Worthy
7. Select Committees: Powers and Functions
Richard Kelly
8. The Impact of Devolution on the UK Parliament
John McEldowney
Part III: Rights, the Constitution and the Legal System
9. The Joint Committee on Human Rights
Murray Hunt
10. From the Human Rights Act to a Bill of Rights?
Alexander Horne and Lucinda Maer
11. The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution
Andrew Le Sueur and Jack Simson Caird
12. Parliament and the Courts: A Pragmatic (or Principled) Defence of the Sovereignty of Parliament
Dawn Oliver
13. Parliamentary Accountability for the Administration of Justice
Gavin Drewry

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