Politics Explained UK Politics

What actually IS the difference between the House of Lords and the House of Commons?

This is some Game of Thrones type sh*t

Alright listen up, cos if you wanna know your shit about politics, this is where you’ve gotta begin: by understanding how the system actually works.

Now, I may have actually only just learned this myself, but let me tell you – it was a confusing process that took lots of researching and trying to get my head around, so I’ll just lay it out for you to make it simple.

You ready to learn some shit about the way the UK is governed? Ite, get ready:

The UK Parliament is split into two legislative ‘houses’. Yeah, this is like some Game of Thrones shit. This is where the law-making magic happens. So, the two houses are the ‘upper house’, or The House of Lords (cos they fancy), and the ‘lower house’, or The House of Commons (cos they’re commoners). In America, the equivalent is the Senate.

The House of Lords

parliament-feat
rockin’ the regal red sofas

The House of Lords is kind of like an exclusive club – you only get membership if you’re invited. I mean, its official title is The Right Honourable the Lords Spiritual and Temporal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled, so you can kind of see why.

The Royal Family are all automatically in it, obvs, but all the other members are either bishops in the Church of England (Lords Spiritual) or life peers (Lords Temporal). The life peers, or Lords Temporal (lmao how extra is our government, seriously) are appointed by the Queen with help from the Prime Minister. They then become “peers of the Realm”.

So anyway, the House of Lords is basically a v elite club, that’s mainly just there to analyse bills passed by the House of Commons and potentially amend them before they pass. Although they can’t actually stop a bill from passing (except in certain circumstances), they can delay them or force the House of Commons to reconsider them. They’re basically just overseeing it all and checking everything’s cushty.

The House of Commons

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green benches for the commoners

Now this is where shit gets real.

The House of Commons is made up of MPs, who we all vote for in our respective constituencies. This is where all the debates kick off and laws get passed. So actually, although its not as exclusive as the House of Lords, it does hold more power and is ultimately more important.

So basically, if the UK Parliament was Destiny’s Child, the Government (aka Theresa May and her cabinet) would be Beyonce, the House of Commons would be Kelly, and the House of Lords would be Michelle… soz hun.

If I’ve missed any important details out or if you have further questions, leave a comment!

The Pantsuit x

 

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