Hot answers tagged

38 votes
Accepted

To whom does "Madam Speaker" refer during the Trump impeachment debate?

"Madam Speaker" is not Rep. Pelosi, but Rep. Diana DeGette, a Democrat from Colorado, who is serving as speaker pro tempore and presiding over the US House of Representatives for the debate on the ...
user avatar
  • 1,327
37 votes
Accepted

How might Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons "play hardball"?

The Speaker can grant ‘urgent questions’ to MPs on a subject - a mechanism which forces the relevant Government minister to appear in the House of Commons to respond to said question. As the ...
user avatar
  • 81.4k
29 votes
Accepted

Can the speaker invoke the 25th amendment without the Senate?

With an the recent talks that Pelosi is going to "discuss" the 25th amendment in order to get rid of president Trump, what is the process for this? Does it have to be voted in Congress and ...
user avatar
  • 14.4k
25 votes
Accepted

Why is the Speaker of the House of Commons (UK) elected by secret ballot?

The rule was introduced in 2001, following the 2000 election of Michael Martin. That election took place "by means of a conventional parliamentary motion with recorded votes on an amendment for each ...
user avatar
  • 1,291
24 votes
Accepted

Why is the current Presiding Officer in Scottish Parliament a member of Labour Party, and not the Scottish National Party?

In the UK system, the speaker is politically neutral, and this requirement of neutrality has been taken seriously by generations of speakers. Moreover it is quite common for the speaker not to be from ...
user avatar
  • 92.7k
19 votes
Accepted

Was the scene depicting a Commons vote won by 3/4 of a vote real in "This House"?

The part of the play which I believe you're referring to can be read here, and refers to the actions of Walter Harrison, then a government whip in a committee stage vote, not a vote in the main ...
user avatar
  • 81.4k
18 votes
Accepted

From when & where is Kevin McCarthy quoted as saying "...there's two people I think, Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump."?

According to the Washington Post, it’s a recording of a June 15th, 2016 meeting held at the Capitol between senior Republicans, including McCarthy, Paul Ryan, Steve Scalise, Evan McMullin, Patrick ...
user avatar
  • 81.4k
17 votes

Do UK voters know if their MP will be the Speaker of the House?

If the Speaker is seeking to continue in the position from the previous Parliament, then he or she runs as the Speaker rather than for a party (since the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums ...
user avatar
  • 20.4k
17 votes

Does no-one standing against the speaker of the house in UK lead to the local electorate being disenfranchised?

Yes. It is a flaw in the British system (I am British). On the other hand, most British voters are effectively disenfranchised, because their vote will never make a difference to the result: they ...
user avatar
16 votes
Accepted

Honourable versus Right Honourable Members

Within the House of Commons, the title "Right Honourable" indicates that the MP is a member of the Privy Council. (In other contexts, it is also used for some peers and Lord Mayors). MPs who ...
user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

Why did the Conservatives yield the Speaker chair?

The tradition of alternating parties is often mentioned, but is not really true. As Wikipedia's list of Speakers shows, it was broken most recently in 2000 when Michael Martin followed Betty Boothroyd ...
user avatar
12 votes

Does no-one standing against the speaker of the house in UK lead to the local electorate being disenfranchised?

One could feel disenfrachised for all sorts of reasons: you could be in a politically 'safe' seat, or be an environmentalist in one of the constituencies that the Green Party doesn't field a candidate,...
user avatar
  • 3,644
10 votes

To whom does "Madam Speaker" refer during the Trump impeachment debate?

Rules of the House: https://naturalresources.house.gov/imo/media/doc/116-House-Rules-Clerk.pdf I 8(a): The Speaker may appoint a Member to perform the duties of the Chair. Except as specified in ...
user avatar
  • 101
10 votes

Is Bercow still an MP obligated to representing his district?

Does he still get to vote on matters, or is someone else appointed or elected to replace him? Neither. By convention: The Speaker does not vote, unless there is a tie, in which case they vote ...
user avatar
  • 7,403
9 votes
Accepted

Why do members of parliament address the speaker instead of speaking normally?

Consider reading up on Robert's Rule of Order. The basic gist is that one person (the "speaker" in this case) acts as a sort of human semaphore to control and delegate access to the floor to only one ...
user avatar
  • 12.4k
8 votes

How does the Speaker of the House know who's who?

Yes, they recognise them. It is not so hard. A teacher in a large school might have several hundred students, and know each one by face and name and target grade. A CEO of a medium sized company ...
user avatar
  • 92.7k
7 votes

Why is the Speaker of the House of Commons (UK) elected by secret ballot?

I suspect, but have not yet found a smoking gun, that the answer lies in the previous election in 2000: This was the last Speaker election to be conducted by means of a conventional parliamentary ...
user avatar
  • 4,022
7 votes

Do UK voters know if their MP will be the Speaker of the House?

If a Speaker hasn't resigned the position prior to a General Election, and is seeking to be re-elected as an MP, then the electorate will know. Convention even says that their "party" allegiance on ...
user avatar
  • 5,598
6 votes
Accepted

Why does US law allow for a speaker that is not elected?

The Constitution does not give a lot of power to the Speaker. The original Constitution in fact gave zero power to the Speaker. The 25th Amendment does give some power to the Speaker, but it also ...
user avatar
  • 1,079
5 votes
Accepted

Does the Speaker of the House of Commons have the power to prevent HM Government allowing the US President to speak in the Palace of Westminster?

The question refers to the Speaker of the House as Commons as "a single keyholder of three to the Palace of Westminster" - but this is not quite right. The three keyholders referred to here are the ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

How do the PM, Secretaries of State and the Speaker of the House of Commons help their constituents?

These other methods may include sending letters to the relevant government minister, discussing in (or outside of) cabinet, or other informal meetings. In the past, whenever I have written to my MP ...
user avatar
  • 27.7k
5 votes

Is Bercow still an MP obligated to representing his district?

It's a good question. I wanted to comment on Kevin's very good answer but I am not yet allowed to do that. My understanding is that the Speaker is elected as an MP unchallenged in their constituency, ...
user avatar
5 votes

How might Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons "play hardball"?

One bit of "playing hardball" that's already happened: on 30th November 2021, the Deputy Speaker allowed at least two opposition MPs to use the word "liar" of the Prime Minister - ...
user avatar
4 votes

Role of Speakers and Deputy Speakers in voting

If the Speaker is formerly a member of the party in government, as well as all the Deputy Speakers, won't that cause issues for the party in power? As they lose a few crucial votes which would have ...
user avatar
  • 5,753
4 votes
Accepted

In parliamentary systems, why are Speakers of Parliament often granted special independence, despite no such protection is required in Constitution?

In many, perhaps all, countries there is the "Constitution" (a legal document) and the "constitution" (the rules and traditions which describe how the government should behave). ...
user avatar
  • 92.7k
4 votes
Accepted

How (un)common is it for the speaker to appear on television (parliamentary footage excluded)?

Politicians often appear on T.V. as so-called "talking heads". A political program will invite two or three politicans from opposing parties to discuss a controversial topic, give their opinions, try ...
user avatar
  • 92.7k
4 votes

Does no-one standing against the speaker of the house in UK lead to the local electorate being disenfranchised?

It's worse than that - the Speaker can't vote on issues, so his or her constituents aren't even represented in Parliament. And, yes, it disenfranchises voters, not to mention the local party. For ...
user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

How does the Speaker vote if there is a tie?

No. Ties are rare, but one happened recently, prompting this question to be explored in parliament and in the press. By tradition, the Speaker votes for any proposal (be it from the government or not) ...
user avatar
  • 5,741
2 votes

Non Elected House Speaker

Regarding "1.": no, according to Wikipedia, which cites a CRS report for this info: Every person elected speaker, however, has been a member. The report itself says, in slightly more ...
user avatar
  • 105k
2 votes
Accepted

Can Kevin McCarthy realistically be elected Speaker of the House, albeit temporarily?

While such a scenario is unlikely to materialise, theoretically, is it realistic for Kevin McCarthy to be elected the Speaker of the House? Is there any mechanism that allows for the Speaker's ...
user avatar
  • 27.3k

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible