CHAPTER XIII
THE POWERS OF PARLIAMENT

The Parliament at Westminster is, in legal theory, the supreme law-making authority for the whole British Empire. However, from the point of view of actual practice, Parliament possesses varying relations with the several different kinds of British communities. For example, the practical relationship of Parliament to England, Scotland, and Wales differs somewhat from its relationship to Northern Ireland, differs considerably more from its relationship to Southern Ireland and the other self-governing members of the so-called British Commonwealth of Nations, and, differs in still another, if not so marked, way from various British possessions scattered round the world.

The present status of Northern Ireland is, roughly, that envisaged in what was for a long time called "Home Rule." This formerly important subject of bitter party controversy, from being a solution advocated by one branch of opinion for all of Ireland or at least for Southern Ireland, came, in the course of time, to be regarded by some persons as offering the possibility of being extended to the whole of the British Isles.1 In this form, the proposal was known as that of "Home Rule All Round." That it was, however, primarily a solution of the Irish question is suggested by the fact that, as soon as Southern Ireland was granted Dominion status and as Unionist Ireland turned out to be the only region to receive home rule, the movement for further extension of home rule tended to arouse less interest. At the same time, the whole subject, under the new name of "Devolution," sometimes called "Federal Devolution," had appeared at one time to possess no mean chance of success.

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1
For this whole matter, reference may be made to Chiao, Devolution in Great Britain ( New York, 1926).

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