When cheering for the re-election of a President, supporters chant 'Four more years! Four more years!'. On this side of the channel, we're a little more short term this week. We've had 3 days of Parliament (well, technically 4, because the Lords are sitting today). Then, next week we get to enjoy four more precious days of debate, scrutiny and legislation.
Once these wonderful moments of action are over, we'll have to wait until 9th October for MPs to really get into action again.
Those looking for some solace may find it in three places:
1) it's another action packed week in store.
2) The time without Parliament will feature Party Conferences from the Lib Dems, Labour, UKIP and the Conservatives. So, we'll have plenty to talk about.
3) When Parliament come back, MPs will spend eight days (8!) in committee looking at this Withdrawal Bill. That's when they go through the whole thing, line by line, and debate meticulous detail. Even the hardiest of politics fans may feel nostalgic for when we only had a couple of weeks at a time.
A quick caveat. Many of the most exciting bits of a Parliamentary week come through Statements (when a government minister wants to update MPs on something topical) and Urgent Questions (when the opposition force a government minister to come to the Commons and answer a question on something topical. Both of these are announced a couple of hours before Parliament sits on each day. It's impossible to include them in a 'look ahead to next week' email.
Monday - The climax to all this week's EU Withdrawal Bill debate. Late on Monday evening, we'll get a vote on whether to accept the general principals of the Bill. It will almost certainly pass. Not only because of DUP votes, either. Much has been made this week of how the government 'are listening' and there might be some significant changes when it is in committee.
Tuesday - One of the effects of the surprise election was that the Finance Bill (the law that puts in place measures from the Chancellor's Budget speech) was rushed through. That meant that some bits were cut out. To do the rest, Philip Hammond is putting through another Finance Bill. This get's it's first big debate in the Commons on Tuesday. Unfortunately, at time of writing, I'm not sure what's in it. But. It'll be tax stuff. Probably.
Wednesday - PMQs! PMQs! PMQs!
Thursday - No legislation being debated on Thursday, but there are a couple of interesting debates. MPs will debate abuse and intimidation of candidates in the last general election. Meanwhile, the Lords are debating the effect of gambling advertising on children. This follow's the new Labour policy of banning gambling sponsorship on football shirts.
Friday - As the Lib Dems prepare to head off to Bournemouth, the rest of us can relax with the new Foo Fighters album, Concrete and Gold.
Teachers! We're here to help you. From school visits (assemblies, workshops, courses) in Kent / London, to free resources and our excellent, excellent weekly quiz (complete with inter school league tables) we can support the excellent work you're already doing. Drop me a line on firstname.lastname@example.org for more.
Our pick of the laws being debated in Parliament next week...
European Union (Withdrawal) Bill
This is the Bill that has been called the Great Repeal Bill. It repeals the original Act that took Britain into the EU in 1972, and transfers the laws that came from the EU into British laws. It doesn’t tackle each policy area individually, there will be separate laws for things like immigration, but it sets up the legal framework to make Brexit possible. Expect a lot of debate about this, the devolved assemblies in Scotland and Wales aren’t happy about it, and the Bill will transfer power to Ministers after Brexit to amend laws without Parliament. Explosive stuff.
On 8th March, Phillip Hammond delivered his last Budget. Once he had finished, as always happens, the measures he's announced get written down and included in the Finance Bill.
On 18th April, however, Theresa May announced an election. The Finance Bill had to throw various bits and pieces out the window in order to get through in time.
We've now got the rest of the measures picked back up, brushed off and presented as this little extra bonus Finance Bill. Lucky old us.
Financial Guidance and Claims Bill
The Bill will combine three financial advice bodies into one, ensuring that people across the UK are able to seek the help and advice they need to manage their finances.
It will also transfer the regulation of claims management companies to the Financial Conduct Authority, who will clamp down on nuisance calling and fraudulent claims and will have the ability to cap the fees charged by claims companies.
I normally try to mix up the 'here's something interesting' section of this email, but secondary or delegated legislation is such a big part of next week's chat, I'm keeping it in. Hope you don't mind.