Westminster system

WestminsterWestminster-styleWestminster parliamentary systemWestminster modelWestminster traditionWestminster styleBritish parliamentary systemparliamentary systemUnited KingdomWestminster democracy
The Westminster system is a parliamentary system of government that was developed in England, which is now a constituent country within the United Kingdom.wikipedia
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Parliamentary system

parliamentaryparliamentarismparliamentary democracy
The Westminster system is a parliamentary system of government that was developed in England, which is now a constituent country within the United Kingdom.
Elsewhere in the world, parliamentary countries are less common, but they are distributed through all continents, most often in former colonies of the British Empire that subscribe to a particular brand of parliamentarianism known as the Westminster system.

Responsible government

responsibleresponsible self-governmentself-governing
It is used, or was once used, in the national and subnational legislatures of most former British Empire colonies upon gaining responsible government, beginning with the first of the Canadian provinces in 1848 and the six Australian colonies between 1855 and 1890.
Responsible government is a conception of a system of government that embodies the principle of parliamentary accountability, the foundation of the Westminster system of parliamentary democracy.

Palace of Westminster

Houses of ParliamentWestminster HallWestminster
This term comes from the Palace of Westminster, the seat of the British Parliament.
The Palace is one of the centres of political life in the United Kingdom; "Westminster" has become a metonym for the UK Parliament and the British Government, and the Westminster system of government commemorates the name of the palace.

Parliament of the United Kingdom

ParliamentUK ParliamentBritish Parliament
This term comes from the Palace of Westminster, the seat of the British Parliament.
With the global expansion of the British Empire, the UK Parliament has shaped the political systems of many countries as ex-colonies and so it has been called the "Mother of Parliaments."

Prime minister

prime ministersPMchief minister
The head of government, usually called the prime minister or premier, will ideally have the support of a majority in the responsible house, and must, in any case, be able to ensure the existence of no absolute majority against the government.
In parliamentary systems fashioned after the Westminster system, the prime minister is the presiding and actual head of government and head of the executive branch.

Federalism

federalfederalistfederal system
The model of Australian federalism adheres closely to the original model of the United States of America, although it does so through a parliamentary Westminster system rather than a presidential system.

Leader of the Opposition

Leader of Oppositionopposition leaderDeputy Leader of the Opposition
The Leader of the Opposition is a title traditionally held by the leader of the largest party not in government in a Westminster System of parliamentary government.

Nigeria

Federal Republic of NigeriaNigerianNGA
However, some former colonies have since adopted either the presidential system (Nigeria for example) or a hybrid system (like Egypt and South Africa) as their form of government.
It is influenced by the Westminster System model in the composition and management of the upper and lower houses of the bicameral legislature.

United Kingdom

BritishUKBritain
The Westminster system is a parliamentary system of government that was developed in England, which is now a constituent country within the United Kingdom.
The UK has a parliamentary government based on the Westminster system that has been emulated around the world: a legacy of the British Empire.

South Africa

South AfricanRepublic of South AfricaRSA
However, some former colonies have since adopted either the presidential system (Nigeria for example) or a hybrid system (like Egypt and South Africa) as their form of government.
As a concession to the Westminster system, the presidency remained parliamentary-appointed and virtually powerless until P. W. Botha's Constitution Act of 1983, which eliminated the office of Prime Minister and instated a near-unique "strong presidency" responsible to parliament.

Politics of Australia

Australian politicsAustraliaAustralian politician
Many political scientists have held that the Australian system of government was consciously devised as a blend or hybrid of the Westminster and the United States systems of government, especially since the Australian Senate is a powerful upper house like the U.S. Senate; this notion is expressed in the nickname "the Washminster mutation".
The Australian system of government combines elements derived from the politial systems of the United Kingdom (fused executive, constitutional monarchy) and the United States (federalism, written constitution, strong bicameralism), along with distinctive indigenous features, and has therefore been characterised as a "Washminster mutation".

Loss of supply

supplyblock supplyblocked supply
Loss of supply occurs where a government in a parliamentary democracy using the Westminster System or a system derived from it is denied a supply of treasury or exchequer funds, by whichever house or houses of parliament or head of state is constitutionally entitled to grant and deny supply.

Bicameralism

bicameralbicameral legislaturechambers
Unlike upper houses in most Westminster parliamentary systems, the Australian Senate is vested with significant power, including the capacity to block legislation initiated by the government in the House of Representatives, making it a distinctive hybrid of British Westminster bicameralism and US-style bicameralism.

Parliamentary privilege

breach of privilegeDáil privilegeprivilege
It is common in countries whose constitutions are based on the Westminster system.

Prime Minister of India

Prime MinisterIndian Prime MinisterPrime Ministers
In a parliamentary republic like India, the president is the de jure executive, even though executive powers are essentially instituted by the prime minister and the Council of Ministers.
The prime minister is the senior-most member of cabinet in the executive of government in a parliamentary system.

Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

Prime MinisterBritish Prime MinisterPrime Minister of Great Britain
In the United Kingdom, the sovereign theoretically holds executive authority, even though the prime minister and the cabinet effectively implement executive powers.
By the 1830s, the Westminster system of government (or cabinet government) had emerged; the Prime Minister had become primus inter pares or the first among equals in the Cabinet and the head of government in the United Kingdom.

Minister (government)

Ministercabinet ministerministers
Executive authority within a Westminster system is essentially exercised by the cabinet, along with more junior ministers, although the head of government usually has the dominant role within the ministry.
In Commonwealth realm jurisdictions which use the Westminster system of government, ministers are usually required to be members of one of the houses of Parliament or legislature, and are usually from the political party that controls a majority in the lower house of the legislature.

Cabinet of the United Kingdom

CabinetBritish Cabinetcabinet minister
In the United Kingdom, the sovereign theoretically holds executive authority, even though the prime minister and the cabinet effectively implement executive powers.
The Cabinet is the ultimate decision-making body of the executive within the Westminster system of government in traditional constitutional theory.

Parliamentary republic

parliamentaryrepublicceremonial presidency
In a parliamentary republic like India, the president is the de jure executive, even though executive powers are essentially instituted by the prime minister and the Council of Ministers.
However, in a parliamentary republic with a head of state whose tenure is dependent on parliament, the head of government and head of state can form one office (as in Botswana, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, and South Africa), but the president is still selected in much the same way as the prime minister is in most Westminster systems.

Executive (government)

executiveexecutive branchExecutive power
In the Westminster political system, the principle of separation of powers is not as entrenched as in some others.

Cabinet collective responsibility

collectively responsiblecabinet solidaritycollective ministerial responsibility
Members of the Cabinet are collectively seen as responsible for government policy, a policy termed cabinet collective responsibility.
Rhodes, Wanna and Weller offer this description of the principle of cabinet solidarity in Westminster systems of parliamentary democracy: "Cabinet solidarity and collective responsibility are twin dimensions of responsible party government that enjoy constitutionality, albeit informally. They lie at the core of ministerial governance. Cabinet solidarity is purely a political convention designed to maintain or protect the collective good as perceived by a partisan ministry. It rests on the notion that the executive ought to appear a collective entity, able to maintain cohesion and display political strength".

Confidence and supply

confidenceconfidence-and-supplysupply
The head of state or his or her representative (such as a governor-general) formally appoints as the head of government whomever commands the confidence of the elected chamber of the legislature and invites him or her to form a government.
In a parliamentary democracy based on the Westminster system, confidence and supply are required for a minority government to retain power in the lower house.

Shadow Cabinet

Shadow MinisterShadowshadow ministry
The Official Opposition and other major political parties not in the Government, will mirror the governmental organisation with their own Shadow Cabinet made up of Shadow Ministers.
The Shadow Cabinet or Shadow Ministry is a feature of the Westminster system of government.

Bill (law)

billbillslegislation
If the parliament passes a motion of no confidence, or refuses to pass an important bill such as the budget, then the government must either resign so that a different government can be appointed or seek a parliamentary dissolution so that new general elections may be held in order to re-confirm or deny the government's mandate.
In the Westminster system, where the executive is drawn from the legislature and usually holds a majority in the lower house, most bills are introduced by the executive (government bill).

Chief minister

Deputy Chief MinisterCMChief Ministers
The role has context within the Westminster system of government where a constitutional head of state (usually sub-national) is advised by ministers who usually head executive government departments (ministries).