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Exploring Parliament

Exploring Parliament (1st edn)

Cristina Leston-Bandeira and Louise Thompson
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date: 29 June 2022

p. 26425. MPs and their Constituencieslocked

p. 26425. MPs and their Constituencieslocked

  • David Judge
  •  and Rebecca Partos

Abstract

This chapter examines what ‘constituency’ means for Members of Parliament (MPs) and their local electorates, and how perceptions of locality affect the work of MPs and the expectations of their constituents. As the representatives of their respective geographical areas, MPs bring the opinions, concerns, and tribulations of their constituents into the workings of the UK Parliament. Such representational work is ofen overlooked or ignored by outside observers and commentators, but it provides a necessary ‘reality check’ for all MPs that links them to the lives of those they are elected to represent. The chapter first provides an overview of MPs as representatives of territorially defined constituencies and of ‘communities of interest’ before discussing ‘constituencies’ within constituencies. It also considers how constituents make sense of parliamentary constituencies and their connection to their representatives by invoking notions of ‘locality’. It shows that constituency work and parliamentary work are often counterposed.

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