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March 07 , 2009

Parliamentary Sovereignty

Contemporary Debates


This book has four main themes: (1) a criticism of 'common law constitutionalism', the theory that Parliament's authority is conferred by, and therefore is or can be made subordinate to, judge-made common law; (2) an analysis of Parliament's ability to abdicate, limit or regulate the exercise of its own authority, including a revision of Dicey's conception of sovereignty, a repudiation of the doctrine of implied repeal and the proposal of a novel theory of 'manner and form' requirements for law-making; (3) an examination of the relationship between parliamentary sovereignty and statutory interpretation, defending the reality of legislative intentions, and their indispensability to sensible interpretation and respect for parliamentary sovereignty; and (4) an assessment of the compatibility of parliamentary sovereignty with recent constitutional developments, including the expansion of judicial review of administrative action, the Human Rights and European Communities Acts and the growing recognition of 'constitutional principles' and 'constitutional statutes'.

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