In Progress
Lesson 1, Topic 77
In Progress

In favour of an uncodified constitution

Some, however, say this rarity of amendments is one of the major drawbacks to a codified constitution. Instead, having an uncodified constitution allows the branches of government flexibility to update these laws, while ensuring that the nation’s values remain respected and updated. There remains a number of laws within the US Constitution that appear very outdated compared to the conventions and values of today. Without the flexibility to change these, before long, a codified constitution could be representing the views of previous centuries, while failing to protect the rights and values of modern times.

In the case of Re Secession of Quebec (1998), it was said: “The Constitution is more than a written text. It embraces the entire global system of rules and principles which govern the exercise of constitutional authority. A superficial reading of selected provisions of the written constitutional enactment, without more, may be misleading.” Having a flexible constitutional framework, like the UK’s in its current form, may avoid confusion and more appropriately represent the nation’s constitution at the current time.

Some argue that the democratic system is more than enough to prevent government abuse of power anyway. Adam Tomkins argues that “politics is able both democratically and effectively to stop government” and “check the exercise of executive power” (Our Republican Constitution, 2005). The need for a codified constitution is therefore limited because democracy is strong enough to make governments accountable on its own.