Its most important functions as a body apart from scrutiny of executive and representation are to provide ministers for the government, in Britain an individual is drawn from Parliament (and usually the House of Commons in order to be in the Government), to pass legislation and authorize spending and the raising of taxes and to hold the government accountable and take it to task where necessary, this is the basic overview of parliaments functions. One of the important factors that influence Parliaments work is that the executive is selected from parliament, and as such can normally control Parliament through a disciplined majority.
Since 1945 every government has had a workable majority, these are the basic principles of the Westminster Model. The legislature is not actually intended to govern, or to have any significant role in the promulgation of legislation.
Recently its been seen that parliaments power has decreased. No individual is responsible for problem though, its more like a consequence of the raising complexity of government in these modern times. .
Formation of government
The government consists of members of the political party that wins an election and has the majority of members in the House of Representatives. This party and/or its leader (the Prime Minister) select fellow parliamentarians to be the ministers who run departments such as the Department of Foreign Affairs. All ministers are members of Parliament and are elected. Although the government is formed in the House of Representatives, some ministers are senators. About two thirds of ministers are members of the House of Representatives, and the remaining one third are senators.
Representation is about acting on behalf of voters and citizens.
Britains a representative democracy all the millions of U.K. residents can not participate in political decision making on a day to day basis; a small group of others are elected by the voters to do so. As said in the beginning, all members of Parliament are elected. Each one of the 150 members of the House of Representatives (MPs) is elected by thousands of voters in each electorate. The interests of electorates are reflected through MPs when they make speeches. They also assist people in their electorate to solve problems about things such as migration problems, pensions, and taxation. States are represented by Senators, each territory has two senators and each state is represented by 12 senators.
Roles of members and senators are to:
Set up parliamentary committees to examine government bills
Investigate into how the government spends money in their budget by participating in estimates committees, (these are held twice a year)
Parliaments the legislative branch of parliament, its key functions is to create laws.
The main responsibility of law making lies with the House of Commons, the House of Lords also have a law making function. Parliament is seen as forum for debate. The government sponsors the majority of bills, at the opening of parliamentary sessions; the most important are announced by the Queen in her speech. Bills can take months to pass and controversial legislation can take even longer, there is a maximum time of 11 months given for consideration as no bill can be carried over from 1 session to the next.
The government or executive implements the laws and other decisions of the Parliament. However, the Parliament likes to check or scrutinise what the government does, especially how when it comes to how the government spends money. The opposition plays an important part in the scrutiny activities of Parliament. Scrutinizing has become more important in the 20th century as the role of executive has grown. Government interventions require greater government initiation of policy programmes and their implementation meaning it important that parliament scrutinizes the Govs policies aswell as the effectiveness of their implementation.
As shown above, Formation of government Representation, Legalisation and Scrutiny are the four very main functions of parliament. Parliament is the legislative centre of the UK, it is made up of the house of commons and house of lords. These were established in 1875.