Whether Parliament fulfils it’s functions is a common exam question and this story provides good evidence for both sides. On the one hand here, we see a good amount of scrutiny of the ‘bedroom tax’ taking place and ultimately the Lib Dems and Labour combining to defeat the Tories, allowing exemptions to this subsidy. On the other hand, we have a defeat of the government of the day which could bring into question the role of Parliament to pass the laws of the elected government.
This issue is fraught with difficulties however, due to the nature of the Coalition. Some would argue the Coalition does not have a mandate as it was not what the people voted for and therefore Parliament is fulfilling it’s duties. Others would argue the Coalition has the strongest mandate in British politics for a long while, with a combined vote of over 50%, and therefore the policies should go through as normal. Either way, this article provides good evidence for both sides of an argument about the role of Parliament.
It also has a good fit into the topic of parties, with party ideology being key to the split here – Lib Dems and Tories voting separately due to the issue in hand. Equally, it can be used as evidence for the strengths (or weaknesses) of the Coalition itself – this was a defeat for the Coalition, leading to one Tory asking the government to confirm the Coalition was now over, but it was only the second major defeat the Coalition has faced in over four years, speaking to their strength. All in all, this article is packed with A02 and well worth using.