All British political parties are committed to the further development of self-government within the Commonwealth and to the establishment in due course of new states which can choose for themselves whether to remain in association with the United Kingdom and the other ‘Realms’. There are disputes about the pace and tactics of change; but the facts of the situation give us no choice about the direction of advance. We are therefore now engaged in a period in which decisions about the choice of constitutional devices are of extreme practical importance, and it is of particular importance that local politicians in the Colonies, as well as the Colonial Office and the party politicians at home, should be well ‘briefed’ on the possible effects of various courses of action. The number of devices available to us is basically quite limited, though each of them can be used in various forms, and the range of combinations is very great. There are only seven matters of first-rate importance to be included in a handbook for British constitution-makers: electoral systems, parliamentary procedure, Cabinet government, a non-political civil service, federations, Dominion status, the British system of local government.
KeywordsPolitical Party Electoral System American Political Science Review Plural Society Communal Representation
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- 22.For reference see the index to H.G. Nicholas, The British Election of 1950 (1951).Google Scholar