Her Majesty's Government: Wikis

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Her Majesty's Government is the central government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Under the British constitution, executive authority notionally lies with the monarch but is exercised by and on the advice of the Cabinet, a collective body of the Queen's most senior ministers. In UK parlance, "the Government" is usually a collective noun that refers to ministers of the Crown, who are all members of one or other of the houses of Parliament. Members of the Government are both individually and collectively accountable to Parliament for the advice tendered to Her Majesty and the actions carried out in her name.

The Government is led by the Prime Minister, who is appointed by the Queen as the Member or Lord of Parliament most likely to command a majority in the House of Commons. The Prime Minister is based at 10 Downing Street, which along with most government departments, is located in Westminster. In practice, the Prime Minister selects the other members of the government and their appointment is confirmed by the Queen. The government is fused with Parliament,[1] which means that in practice a government must seek re-election at least every five years.[2]

The current Prime Minister is Gordon Brown, leader of the Labour Party. He was appointed by Queen Elizabeth II on 27 June 2007.[3] He leads a government composed of 127 ministers, mostly Labour Party MPs.[4]

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Devolved governments

Since 1998, certain areas of central government have been devolved to democratically-accountable governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. By contrast, there is no devolved government in England.

Local government

Elected local governments exist in all four component parts of the United Kingdom.

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"UK government" and "Government of the United Kingdom" redirect here. This article refers to the UK Government, i.e. Her Majesty's Government. For the general topic of governance in the United Kingdom, see Politics of the United Kingdom.

Template:PoliticsUK Her Majesty's Government is the government of the United Kingdom.

Under the Constitution of the United Kingdom, executive authority notionally lies with the monarch but is exercised in practice by her ministers. Her Majesty's Government is the collective name for these ministers, and it is effectively an executive authority for the UK.

The government is lead by a Prime Minister, who is appointed by the monarch as the Member of Parliament most likely to command a majority in Parliament. In practice, the Prime Minister selects the other members of the government and their appointment is confirmed by the Queen. The Prime Minister and Cabinet (consisting of all the most senior government ministers) are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the monarch and to Parliament. The government is fused with Parliament,[1] which means that in practice a government must seek re-election at least every five years.[2]

The current Prime Minister is Gordon Brown, leader of the Labour Party. He was appointed by Queen Elizabeth II on 27 June 2007.[3] He leads a government composed of 127 ministers, mostly Labour Party MPs.[4]

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History of the term

In the British Empire, the term "His (or Her) Majesty's Government" was originally only used by the Imperial Government in London. With the development of the Commonwealth, the self-governing Dominions came to be seen as realms of the Sovereign equal in status to the United Kingdom, and from the 1920s and 1930s the form "His Majesty's Government in ..." began to be used by United Kingdom and Dominion governments. Colonial, state and provincial governments, on the other hand, continued to use the lesser title "Government of ...". There was also His Majesty's Government in the Irish Free State.[citation needed]

Today, however, Commonwealth realm governments have now reverted to the form "Government of ...", and it is today mainly in the United Kingdom that the titles "Her Majesty's Government", "Her Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom" or "Her Britannic Majesty's Government," the last in dealings with foreign states and on British passports, can be found in official use. Although very uncommon today in other Commonwealth Realms, this usage is not incorrect; in a 1989 Canadian Supreme Court decision, one of the Justices referred to "Her Majesty's Government for the Province of Nova Scotia".[5]

Usage

The abbreviation HMG is often used by members of the government and their advisers as a convenient short label to describe members of the Cabinet and the senior civil servants in departments of the United Kingdom Government. The term comes from the formal constitutional position that ministers govern the state by advising the Crown through the Privy Council.

Individual governments (also known historically as ministries) may also be identified by reference to the Prime Minister who leads them (e.g. the Attlee government, or Gladstone's second ministry).

See also

References

External links


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