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Law, Liberty, and JusticeThe Legal Foundations of British Constitutionalism$
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T. R. S. Allan

Print publication date: 1994

Print ISBN-13: 9780198259916

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198259916.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 December 2021

Legislative Supremacy

Legislative Supremacy

(p.264) 11 Legislative Supremacy
Law, Liberty, and Justice

T. R. S. Allan

Oxford University Press

The legal doctrine of legislative supremacy in the UK expresses the courts' commitment to British parliamentary democracy. It provides for the exercise of the political will of the electorate through the medium of its parliamentary representatives. If an appropriate conception of the boundaries of the political community provides the framework for the doctrine's application, some conception of democracy must provide its substantive political content. The courts' continuing adherence to the legal doctrine of sovereignty must entail commitment to some irreducible, minimum concept of the democratic principle. In the same light, this chapter suggests that Dicey' s principle of ‘equality before the law’ is the consequence of a deeper conception of the equality of citizens — an equality which forms the basis of commitment to democracy itself.

Keywords:   legislative sovereignty, political morality, legislative supremacy, parliamentary sovereignty, Dicey

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