A new Magna Carta? - Political and Constitutional Reform Contents


Parliament's Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee has used the first ever five-year fixed-term Parliament to review various parts of our democracy. Alongside this, working closely in a unique collaboration with King's College London, we have produced a series of papers on the theme of whether or not to have a codified constitution. We are now publishing these papers for public comment and consideration. The Select Committee is deliberately not supporting a position for or against a codified constitution, believing it is for the British people ultimately to decide that question. Instead, as we approach the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, and an election year, we are seeking to inform the debate by briefly outlining the arguments for and against codification and presenting several possible options: a Constitutional Code, a Constitutional Consolidation Act, or a Written Constitution. Each of these options is itself open to debate and variation. We feel they are for the elector to consider, reject, accept or amend. We will consult widely and are asking you, and anyone else who is interested in the future of the United Kingdom's constitution, to send us your views by the end of the year, which can include responding to the questions below:

·  Does the UK need a codified constitution?

·  If so, which of the three options offers the best way forward?

·  What needs to be included in/excluded from your favoured option if you have one?

Comments can be emailed to pcrc@parliament.uk or sent by post to the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA. The consultation closes on 1 January 2015. We will then report on the responses from the public in time for them to be taken into account ahead of the general election.

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Prepared 10 July 2014