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Democracy or Feudalism

Lib Dem deputy leader , Vince Cable "It was reported this week that Her Majesty the Queen had cancelled her diamond wedding celebrations because it was judged to be inappropriate to engage in extravagance at a time of economic gloom and recession. Do you share my view that this demonstrates Her Majesty's unerring instincts for the public mood, or does the Government think she was overreacting?"

Michael Martin, The Speaker of the House of Commons "Order! You shouldn't discuss Her Majesty the Queen. The honourable member must not discuss her majesty the Queen in the house. "

According to Erskine May, the guide to parliamentary practice, "the irregular use of the Queen's name to influence a decision of the House is unconstitutional in principle and inconsistent with the independence of Parliament". It adds: "Any attempt to use her name in debate to influence the judgement of Parliament is immediately checked and censured." It says MPs have been reprimanded "or even sent to the Tower" for treasonable or seditious language "or disrespectful use of Her Majesty's name".

Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg said Parliament "is fast becoming a museum piece - a 19th-century home for our 21st-century political elite".

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