In the previous post on inappropriately named Acts, Croft raises a new dimension – perhaps I should have a competition to identify the most pointless Act of Parliament. That may attract good number of entries. However, here I offer an addendum to the post.
In 2008 I served on the Joint Committee on the Draft Constitutional Renewal Bill. This was later introduced as the Constitutional Reform and Governance Bill, which completed its passage in 2010. As initially introduced, it embodied several parts covering rather disparate topics, including the civil service, treaty ratification, and the House of Lords. (It was substantially trimmed as a consequence of the parliamentary wash-up.) When the relevant minister, Jack Straw, appeared before the Committee, I suggested it should be renamed the Constitution (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill. That was not meant altogether seriously, even though it did convey the nature of the Bill. However, as already mentioned, the Bill was introduced under a new name. Why? Because the Government realised that there was no part of the constitution that was actually being renewed by the Bill! The eventual title moved somewhat in the direction of what I was suggesting….