Electing a new Speaker: what happens next?

Electing a new Speaker: what happens next?

After over ten years as Speaker, John Bercow has announced his intention to stand down at the end of October. As for who will replace him, that is unclear and will be decided by an election amongst MPs, several of whom have already declared their candidacy. But how does that election work? Mark Bennister offers a guide to the process. 

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UQ if you want to: John Bercow’s impact on Urgent Questions

UQ if you want to: John Bercow’s impact on Urgent Questions

The following piece presents the research findings of a final year undergraduate dissertation based at the University of Hull.

By Ben Goldsborough

Speaker John Bercow has repeatedly reaffirmed his belief that increased use of Urgent Questions (UQs) in the chamber of the House of Commons has made ‘ministers…become much more willing to volunteer statements to the House than had become the habit for many years previously’. But until now this statement was based on anecdotal evidence and not solid data. This research aims to understand if UQs are an effective scrutiny tool in order to hold the executive to account. To do so, it has looked at the role of the last three Speakers’ use of UQs (and previously Private Notice Questions). The following analysis is split into three sections: first, how many and what types of question were granted; second, who answered the questions; and third, who asked the questions in the first place.

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The Speaker election row tells us two important things about parliament

The Speaker election row tells us two important things about parliament

On 26 March, its final sitting day, the House of Commons rejected government proposals to reform how the Speaker is elected at the start of the new parliament. Here Meg Russell reflects on what this teaches us about parliament, suggesting it holds two lessons. First, that the 2010 House of Commons was more resistant than its predecessors to government dominance; but second, that further reform is still needed to reduce that dominance.

Please note this blog piece was originally published on the Constitution Unit blog.

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