Who's minding the shop?
It's a question I've never asked myself before or indeed thought of asking. This media talk of the dissolution has brought the question to the forefront of my mind.
When I was a youngster my family ran a corner shop and the perennial cry was always 'Who's minding the shop?' Followed closely by 'The bell's rung!' We had one of those old-fashioned bells on a coiled spring that was rung every time the shop door opened.
The first part of the answer to this question above lies in the following statement.
The Queen (Monarch) rules The Prime Minister Governs.
I suppose that explains why the PM has to report regularly to the Monarch of the day and normally that's a once a week occasion.
Now that Parliament is dissolved, every seat in the House of Commons becomes vacant. All business in the House comes to an end. There are no Members of Parliament. MPs revert to being members of the public and lose privileges associated with being a Member of Parliament.
MPs are allowed access to Parliament for just a few days in which to remove papers from their offices. The facilities that the House provides for MPs in Westminster during a Parliament are no longer available to them from 5pm on the day of dissolution.
Until a new Parliament is elected, there are no MPs. Those who wish to be MPs again must stand again as candidates for election.
So if there are no MPs who's running the country? I suspect the explanation lies in the following extract from The Cabinet Manual.
Para 2.8 Cabinet Manual "Prime Ministers hold office unless and until they resign."
So despite not being an MP David Cameron presumably continues as The Queens 'appointed' Prime Minister and the remainder of the Government as his appointees still hold office.
It's an interesting little quirk of our latest version of the unwritten Constitution of the Country.
Finally, a question for you - are you playing your part in the democratic life of the Country? Have you registered to vote? Shouldn't you?
Here's the link: http://www.sefton.gov.uk/news/register-to-vote.aspx
Update: 31 March
Thought you'd like to see the proclamation regarding the next Parliament:
BY THE QUEEN A PROCLAMATION FOR DECLARING THE CALLING OF A NEW PARLIAMENT ELIZABETH R.
Whereas We, by and with the advice of Our Privy Council, being desirous and resolved, as soon as may be, to meet Our People, and to have their Advice in Parliament, do publish this, Our Royal Proclamation, and do hereby make known to all Our loving Subjects Our Royal Will and Pleasure to call a new Parliament to be holden at Westminster on Monday the eighteenth day of May next: And We do hereby also, by this Our Royal Proclamation under Our Great Seal of Our Realm, require Writs to be issued by Our Chancellor of Great Britain for causing the Lords Spiritual and Temporal who are to serve in the said Parliament to give their Attendance in Our said Parliament on the said date.
Given at Our Court at Buckingham Palace, this thirtieth day of March in the Year of our Lord two thousand and fifteen and in the sixty-fourth year of Our Reign.