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Lib Dem Ministers/Tory Backbenchers Voting Against or Abstaining

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    (Original post by dannymccs)
    Conservative/Lib Dem backbench MPs are not the government.
    who decides who is back bench and who is front bench?
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    (Original post by Barden)
    So if the prime minister decides that we nuke China, on a whim, then everyone in the cabinet should agree, or they should resign? :lolwut:

    You appear to be advocating dictatorship brah...
    Give a more realistic example Barden. The Prime Minister is as powerful as his cabinet allows him to be. If everyone in the cabinet disagrees with the prime minister, that prime minister will either shut up and realise it, or he won't last long.

    I am not advocating anything, brah, I am stating what the current system is. Collective responsibility.

    (Original post by DaveSmith99)
    its in the constitution.
    Exactly
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    (Original post by Jacktri)
    who decides who is back bench and who is front bench?
    Depends on the party.
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    (Original post by Jacktri)
    who decides who is back bench and who is front bench?
    The Prime Minister - or leader of the party if in opposition.
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    [QUOTE=Teaddict;28815191]Give a more realistic example Barden. The Prime Minister is as powerful as his cabinet allows him to be. If everyone in the cabinet disagrees with the prime minister, that prime minister will either shut up and realise it, or he won't last long.

    But surely the prime minister is the government, in so far as being the ultimate decision-maker, in this scenario where everyone has to either agree or resign?

    I.e. How far up the chain of command does one have to go to find someone who is allowed to disagree with the party leader? If the cabinet don't have to agree to every word which comes out of the PM's mouth, then why do the MPs have to agree with everything the cabinet come up with?

    I am not advocating anything, brah, I am stating what the current system is.

    Actually you did, you said it was something you agreed with.
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    (Original post by Barden)
    But surely the prime minister is the government, in so far as being the ultimate decision-maker, in this scenario where everyone has to either agree or resign?
    Since when has the prime minister been the government? We don't have some all powerful president Barden, we have cabinet government.

    I.e. How far up the chain of command does one have to go to find someone who is allowed to disagree with the party leader? If the cabinet don't have to agree to every word which comes out of the PM's mouth, then why do the MPs have to agree with everything the cabinet come up with?
    Let's assume all cabinet ministers agree on a policy, but one opposes it deeply. That one cabinet minister either needs to support government and keep his concerns private or he should resign. Historically we know of many resignations from government because of government policy.

    Actually you did, you said it was something you agreed with
    I am not advocating a new system, I am explaining the current system. It just happens to be a system I agree with.
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    (Original post by Teaddict)
    Since when has the prime minister been the government? We don't have some all powerful president Barden, we have cabinet government.
    HURR DURR That's what I'm trying to tell you.

    :facepalm:


    I am not advocating a new system, I am explaining the current system. It just happens to be a system I agree with.
    You are advocating the current system.
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    (Original post by Teaddict)
    If ministers do not like government policy they should resign. A minister either votes for the government or resigns, the idea that they can abstain is ridiculous and against the constitution of this country.
    If this is how things should be run, then it completely bypasses democracy and firmly lays power at the doorstep of one person. Fool.
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    To be honest I find the idea of Lib Dem MPs abstaining from the vote even worse than them actually voting for the fee rise. Abstaining just means that, when they have to face the electorate at the next election, they'll get to waffle on about how they didn't technically vote in favour of higher fees and actually disagreed with it all along. <_<

    I find the possibilty of a number of tory backbenchers voting against the fee rise interesting, but unfortunately I'm virtually certain that the proposal will be passed.
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    (Original post by Teaddict)
    Don't be stupid Aeolus. You know full well that our constitution has within it collective responsibility. The governments acts as a whole and votes as a whole. If you do not support government policy, you resign. Its as simple as that.

    If you feel that government policy is bad for your constituents, resign.
    What the hell are you talking about? Our consitution is a jumble and often vauge mess of conventions via precedent.

    What you have effectively done is render representative MP's redundant, minister or not 9The OP is not exclusively talking about ministers here). Please explain to me the reason for this representation if they are not going to represent whatsoever? Why should cabinet ministers be representatives at all?

    Why don't we just vote for some central authority that will make decisions with impunity rather than a set of representative individuals with the illusion of a vote.
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    (Original post by Barden)
    I fail to see how this is at all democratic.

    I can understand the sentiment that MPs should not be allowed to abstain, however there'd be no point in having a parliament at all if ministers couldn't go against their party's line.
    He's right-convention has it that a minister accepts collective responsability when he enters the government and votes with what cabinet decides. If he can't bring himself to do that then he should resign. Thats constitutional conventions as it applies to majority governments-hence the resignations of Robin Cook et. al in 2003.

    How it applies to this coalition is hard to say-they decided to let the MP's abstain on the vote but its hard to say if that applies to Ministers. Certainly it'd be an odd circumvention of the constitution to expressively allow them too (Although ministers have, of course, been absent from debates in the past it has never been explicitly sanctioned).

    TBH by my reckon the Libs should either vote for or resign.
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    (Original post by Barden)
    HURR DURR That's what I'm trying to tell you.
    Since when? Throughout this I have never even hinted that the government is a single person like a president. I made it quite clear that if they don't agree with government they should resign.

    I made it clear that government is cabinet not the prime minister as an individual.
    You are advocating the current system
    I am advocating the current system we have in place and have had in place for centuries? If that's how you want to word it fine, but the main point of my comments wasn't supporting a system but stating what the system is so my opinion on it is irrelevant to my comments.

    (Original post by rylit91)
    If this is how things should be run, then it completely bypasses democracy and firmly lays power at the doorstep of one person. Fool.
    Where did I say government was one person?

    Oh no, I didn't... you just made up some crap or you can't read... Government is cabinet, that is several people...
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    (Original post by Silly Goose)
    To be honest I find the idea of Lib Dem MPs abstaining from the vote even worse than them actually voting for the fee rise. Abstaining just means that, when they have to face the electorate at the next election, they'll get to waffle on about how they didn't technically vote in favour of higher fees and actually disagreed with it all along. <_<

    I find the possibilty of a number of tory backbenchers voting against the fee rise interesting, but unfortunately I'm virtually certain that the proposal will be passed.
    This!
    They specifically pledged that they will vote against, so if they think abstaing somehow makes it better they are truly deluded. I'd actuall slightly prefer they voted for rather if they are going to abstain, at least it will make them look less spineless.

    But I know quite a few Lib Dems and at least one Conservatve is going to vote against.
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    The Convention is that once a decision is taken by the Government, then all ministers must support it or resign. The idea being that ministers, and other members of the Government, have the opportunity to voice dissent privately (either to the PM or minister in charge), however, once the Government takes a decision, if you are in the Government, you back it. That is the doctrine of collective cabinet responsibility.

    The members of the Government are Cabinet Members, Junior Ministers, Whips, PPS's etc, also known as the pay-roll vote.

    This convention does mean that a PM may choose to offer a fairly rebellious MP a job in order to ensure that they don't rebel. The MP then has to choose if they want to keep voting as they did before, or if they'd prefer to the career advancement.

    This doesn't mean that all Lib Dem & Tory MPs must vote on Government lines, just that they will be encouraged to do so by their whips. It just applies to those with jobs in the Government.
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    I agree with the above poster in that abstaining Lib Dems are the worst kind.

    They should either have the balls to come out and support what I believe to be a sensible policy, or reject it - I don't care which Abstaining is just the act of a coward.

    Signing the anti-fees pledge was a stupid thing in the first place, merely agreed upon to try and wn student votes (and it worked). They were very short sighted and didn't imagine that they'd reach this position.
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    (Original post by Teaddict)
    Since when? Throughout this I have never even hinted that the government is a single person like a president. I made it quite clear that if they don't agree with government they should resign.

    I made it clear that government is cabinet not the prime minister as an individual.


    I am advocating the current system we have in place and have had in place for centuries? If that's how you want to word it fine, but the main point of my comments wasn't supporting a system but stating what the system is so my opinion on it is irrelevant to my comments.



    Where did I say government was one person?

    Oh no, I didn't... you just made up some crap or you can't read... Government is cabinet, that is several people...
    You're the idiot for completely disregarding what I said, and instead of countering it with a viable response, answered with an ill-thought, knee-jerk reaction that means nothing.

    Who has the overall say in the Cabinet? PM. Cabinet is Govt. Ministers must agree with Govt (according to you)

    What is the point of electing Ministers if this is the way to go?
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    (Original post by Little Jules)
    The Convention is that once a decision is taken by the Government, then all ministers must support it or resign. The idea being that ministers, and other members of the Government, have the opportunity to voice dissent privately (either to the PM or minister in charge), however, once the Government takes a decision, if you are in the Government, you back it. That is the doctrine of collective cabinet responsibility.

    The members of the Government are Cabinet Members, Junior Ministers, Whips, PPS's etc, also known as the pay-roll vote.

    This convention does mean that a PM may choose to offer a fairly rebellious MP a job in order to ensure that they don't rebel. The MP then has to choose if they want to keep voting as they did before, or if they'd prefer to the career advancement.

    This doesn't mean that all Lib Dem & Tory MPs must vote on Government lines, just that they will be encouraged to do so by their whips. It just applies to those with jobs in the Government.
    Thank you. Well written and exactly what I have said throughout this thread.
    I will rep you tomorrow.

    (Original post by rylit91)
    You're the idiot for completely disregarding what I said
    Burn in hell

    What is the point of electing Ministers if this is the way to go?
    See above. As the above poster I quoted says, that is our constitution. You can have a debate about whether it is good or not, however, that doesn't take away from the fact that that is our constitution.
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    (Original post by Teaddict)
    Thank you. Well written and exactly what I have said throughout this thread.
    I will rep you tomorrow.



    Burn in hell



    See above. As the above poster I quoted says, that is our constitution. You can have a debate about whether it is good or not, however, that doesn't take away from the fact that that is our constitution.
    Very sophisticated argument.
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    (Original post by WharfedaleTiger)
    He's right-convention has it that a minister accepts collective responsability when he enters the government and votes with what cabinet decides. If he can't bring himself to do that then he should resign. Thats constitutional conventions as it applies to majority governments-hence the resignations of Robin Cook et. al in 2003.

    How it applies to this coalition is hard to say-they decided to let the MP's abstain on the vote but its hard to say if that applies to Ministers. Certainly it'd be an odd circumvention of the constitution to expressively allow them too (Although ministers have, of course, been absent from debates in the past it has never been explicitly sanctioned).

    TBH by my reckon the Libs should either vote for or resign.
    Good post :yy: Will rep you tomorrow.
    I agree with you - they should vote for or resign.

    (Original post by Aeolus)
    What the hell are you talking about?
    I will make this simple for you Aeolus.

    I was referring to ministers more specifically because MPs can do what they want I don't care. Ministers either support the government or resign. Simple. Its an established convention that I thought everyone knew.

    What you have effectively done is render representative MP's redundant, minister or not 9The OP is not exclusively talking about ministers here). Please explain to me the reason for this representation if they are not going to represent whatsoever? Why should cabinet ministers be representatives at all?
    MPs can vote how they like. Ministers either vote for the government or resign.
    Why don't we just vote for some central authority that will make decisions with impunity rather than a set of representative individuals with the illusion of a vote.
    MPs can vote how they like. Ministers either vote for the government or resign.
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    According to the BBC, Lib Dem Cabinet ministers will vote FOR.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11935176

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