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The position of the House of Lords in the British constitutional system

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?If the second chamber disagrees with the first, it is malicious and if it agrees, it is superfluous". This statement by Abbe Sieyes was quoted against SD Bailey at, ?The Future of the House of Lords'.

Assembled almost seven hundred years ago, the House of Lords of the British system consists of 746 members, who are not subjected to election. They are not elected, but they are either appointed by the government, or they have the status of 92 hereditary peers as of today. Before defining the role of the House of Lords, one should first analyze its composition in the British constitutional system. The House of Lords currently consists of 601 life peers, 92 hereditary peers and 26 members of the Church.

Traditionally, it was composed of hereditary peers, the Law Lords (senior magistrates) and the Spiritual Lords (archbishops and Anglican bishops). Later, most of the hereditary peers lost their right to sit as per the requirement of the House of Lords Act in 1999.

One portion of the House of Lords follows a bicameral parliamentary constitutional system. It consists of two chambers: a lower house, known as the House of Commons and the upper house, called the House of Lords.

However, the bicameral system in England is unequal; the lower house is the one that dominates the political game. Since the early nineteenth century, the powers of the House of Lords have significantly decreased and now its role is significantly lower than the House of Commons.

Tags: House of Lords, British constitutional system, British parliamentary system, House of Commons

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