The Kingdom of Dartfordia is a mostly federal democracy governed within the framework of a constitutional monarchy, in which the Monarch is the head of state and the Prime Minister of Dartfordia is the head of government. Executive power is exercised by His Majesty’s Government, on behalf of and by the consent of the Monarch, as well as by the Regional Governments of Southfleet, Wilmington, Hawley, Littlebrook, Stone and Darenth, and the Subregional authorities in Greater Hematite, the City of Jenka and Cydonia Island. Legislative power is vested in the two chambers of the Parliament of Dartfordia, the House of Commons and the House of Lords, as well as in the parliaments of Southfleet and Littlebrook, the assemblies in Greater Hematite, Wilmington, Hawley, Stone and Darenth, and in the council assemblies of Jenka and Cydonia Island.
Dartfordia’s 1924 Constitution is the act that defines the state, the monarchy and the distribution of power between central government and the provinces. However, very little is prescribed in the constitution, and thus a large part of the Kingdom’s constitutional makeup a collection of disparate written sources, including statutes, judge-made case law and international treaties, together with constitutional conventions. As there is no technical difference between the Constitution Act and any other piece of primary legislation, the Dartfordian Parliament can perform “constitutional reform” simply by passing another Act of Parliament, and thus has the political power to change or abolish almost any written or unwritten element of the constitution.
The reigning monarch is King George I, and the current Prime Minister is Daniel Cleaver MP.
- 1 The Crown
- 2 Executive
- 3 Parliament
- 4 Judiciary
- 5 International Representatives
As a federal state under constitutional monarchy, the Monarch, presently King George I, serves as the head of state of Dartfordia, though he takes little direct part in government. The King’s executive authority is known as Royal Prerogative and can be used for a vast amount of things, such as the issue or withdrawal of passports, to the dismissal of the Prime Minister or even the Declaration of War. The powers are delegated from the Monarch personally, in the name of the Crown, and can be handed to various ministers, or other Officers of the Crown, and can purposely bypass the consent of Parliament.
The head of His Majesty’s Government; the Prime Minister, also has weekly meetings with the sovereign, where he has “the right to be consulted, the right to encourage, and the right to warn.” Such power is interpreted loosely, and most Monarchs since 1924 have often exerted significant power and authority – including in the appointments of government minister. Such authority has waned significantly since the 1985 Constitutional Crisis, the accession of George I as King, and the election of Harold Saxon as Prime Minister.
Senior members of the Royal Family
Senior members of the Royal Family are those considered for formal state protection, and who have the authority to act on the King’s behalf in official state engagements or attend meetings of the Privy Council. Senior Members are defined by the Order-in-Council dated July 1926 as: “The King, his Queen, his children, his eldest child’s spouse, his eldest child’s children, his eldest child’s eldest child’s spouse, his eldest child’s eldest child’s children, his siblings, his eldest sibling’s eldest child and his surviving parent.” All senior royals are automatically entitled to the style ‘His/Her Royal Highness’ (HRH), and although some members (due to changes in the family) lose the privileges of a senior member, they keep the HRH style.
Also indicated below is the Line of Succession. The Kingdom of Dartfordia has a system of absolute primogeniture, which was proclaimed with the inauguration of the House of Vaughan in 1924.
|0||HM King George I||Queen Elizabeth||HRH the Prince of Littlebrook
HRH The Princess Georgia
|King Alexander and Queen Mary||Rochester Palace, Hematite|
|N/A||HM Queen Elizabeth||King George I||HRH the Prince of Littlebrook
HRH The Princess Georgia
|N/A||Rochester Palace, Hematite|
|1||HRH Prince Alexander, Prince of Littlebrook (also: HIM Emperor Alexander, Emperor of Rokkenjima)||HRH the Princess of Littlebrook||HRH Princess Adriana of Littlebrook
HRH Prince Lucius of Littlebrook
|King George I and Queen Elizabeth||Pyrena Castle, Rokkenima|
|N/A||HRH Princess Beatrice, Princess of Littlebrook (also: HIM Empress Beatrice, Empress of Rokkenjima)||HRH the Prince of Littlebrook||HRH Princess Adriana of Littlebrook
HRH Prince Lucius of Littlebrook
|N/A||Pyrena Castle, Rokkenima|
|2||TBC||HRH Princess Adriana of Littlebrook (also: Crown Princess Adriana of Rokkenjima)||N/A||N/A||The Prince and Princess of Littlebrook||Pyrena Castle, Rokkenima|
|3||TBC||HRH Prince Lucius of Littlebrook (also: Prince Lucius of Rokkenjima)||N/A||N/A||The Prince and Princess of Littlebrook||Pyrena Castle, Rokkenima|
|4||HRH the Princess Georgia||N/A||N/A||King George I and Queen Elizabeth||Winchester Castle, Hawley|
|5||HRH Prince Michael, Duke of Wilmington||HRH Princess Catherine, the Duchess of Wilmington (deceased)||King Alexander and Queen Mary||Winchester Castle, Hawley|
|6||TBC||HRH Princess Charlotte of Wilmington||N/A||N/A||Duke and Duchess of Wilmington||Winchester Castle, Hawley|
|7||TBC||HRH Prince Thomas, Duke of Hawley||HRH Princess Nicole, Duchess of Hawley||Princess Harriet of Hawley
Prince Kenneth of Hawley
|King Alexander and Queen Mary||Holby City Palace, Hawley|
Italics indicates a senior member who is under the age of 18, and therefore legally unable to sit in the Privy Council.
|His Majesty the King
Her Majesty the Queen
(a.k.a ‘The Winchester’)
|Her Royal Highness the Princess Georgia
His Royal Highness the Duke of Wilmington
Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Wilmington
|Holby City Palace
|His Royal Highness the Duke of Hawley
Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Hawley
Princess Harriet of Hawley
Prince Kenneth of Hawley
|Summer residence of the Royal Family||Ancient|
|Official residence of the Monarch in Littlebrook||1837|
Prime Minister of Dartfordia
Daniel Cleaver MP
since April 2016
|Style||The Right Honourable|
Cross-Straits Heads of Government Group
Dartfordian Joint Council
|Reports to||House of Commons|
|Residence||Chancel House, Southfleet|
|Appointer||His Majesty the King|
|Term length||At His Majesty’s Pleasure|
|Position established||1612: Chief Minister of the Kingdom of Littlebrook
1644: Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Southfleet
1801: Prime Minister of the Empire of Dartfordia
1924: Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Dartfordia
|Inaugural holder||Sir Thomas Moore|
The Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Dartfordia is the head of His Majesty’s Government. The prime minister (informal abbreviation: PM) and Cabinet (consisting of all the most senior ministers, most of whom are government department heads) are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Monarch, to Parliament, to their political party and ultimately to the electorate.
The office is not established by any constitution or law but exists only by long-established convention, which stipulates that the monarch must appoint as prime minister the person most likely to command the confidence of the House of Commons; this individual is typically the leader of the political party or coalition of parties that holds the largest number of seats in that chamber.
The position of Prime Minister was not created; it evolved slowly and erratically over three hundred years due to numerous acts of Parliament, political developments, and accidents of history. The origins of the position are found in constitutional changes that occurred following the Peasants’ Revolt in Littlebrook 1605-1612, and similar movements in Southfleet in the 1640s, both of which began a long and slow transition of power from the Monarch to the Prime Minister. When the Dartfordian Empire was established in 1801, the positions of Chief Minister of Littlebrook and Prime Minister of Southfleet were merged, though this initially resulted in the sovereign’s power expanding.
Although the Sovereign was not stripped of the ancient prerogative powers and legally remained the head of government, politically it gradually became necessary for him or her to govern through a Prime Minister who could command a majority in Parliament.
The current Prime Minister is Daniel Cleaver, leader of the National Party, who was appointed by the King in April 2016. As the National Party do not have a full majority in the House, they were required to seek confidence and supply deals with the Liberal and Centre parties. This is in contrast with the tradition of forming coalitions, as had been done with his predecessors Harold Saxon (Socialist Party leader; coalition with the Green Party) and Harriet Jones (National Party leader; coalition with the Centre Party).
The Prime Minister is challenged by the Leader of the Opposition, currently Leane Hunnable (Socialist party), who traditionally leads the largest party not in government and is appointed a member of the King’s Privy Council. The Leader of the Opposition usually appoints a Shadow Cabinet, who can ‘man-mark’ the government ministers.
The Cabinet of Dartfordia is made up of the Prime Minister and the relevant Secretaries of State, who are all appointed by the Monarch on advice of the Prime Minister. Members of the Cabinet can be made up of both members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, however due to their elected nature, it is more common for senior members of the Cabinet to be form the House of Commons.
While in Coalition government, members of the minority coalition party tend to fulfil vacancies in the Cabinet. However, as the present government is based upon confidence and supply, only the leaders of the minority parties are given roles as Ministers-without-Portfolio.
|Keith Hemingway MP||Deputy Prime Minister
Chancellor of the Exchequer
|Deborah Hunt MP||First Secretary of State
Secretary of State for Home Affairs
|John Lankly MP||Chief Member of Counsel
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
|Michael Lennon MP KC||Secretary of State for Justice||National Party|
|Thomas Stevens MP||Secretary of State for Defence and the Armed Forces||National Party|
|Natalia Thomas MP||Secretary of State for Education||National Party|
|Martin Hopkins MP||Secretary of State for Health||National Party|
|Lord Tyler||Secretary of State for Transport||National Party|
|Baroness Greening||Secretary of State for Energy, Sustainability and Natural Resources||National Party|
|Baroness Morden||Secretary of State for Agriculture, Fishing and Food Safety||National Party|
|Tristram Fox MP||Secretary of State for Work, Pensions and Social Security||National Party|
|David Osborne MP||Secretary of State for Trade and Industry||National Party|
|Alicia King MP||Secretary of State for Science, Technology and Innovation||National Party|
|Alex Fallon MP||Secretary of State for Business and Enterprise||National Party|
|Theresa Thistle MP||Secretary of State for Devolved Affairs||National Party|
|Lady Grey||Secretary of State for International Aid and Development||National Party|
|Becky Thompson MP||Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport||National Party|
|Jacob Campbell MP KC||Attorney General||National Party|
|Christopher Martin MP||Leader of the House of Commons||National Party|
|Lord Epson||Leader of the House of Lords||National Party|
|Barry Blissit MP||Chief Whip of the House of Commons||National Party|
|Baroness Farthing||Chief Whip of the House of Lords||National Party|
|Luke Foreman MP||Minister-without-Portfolio
Centre Party Representative
|Nick Adams MP||Minister-without-Portfolio
Liberal Party Representative
Dartfordian Joint Council
The Dartfordian Joint Council is a biannual meeting between each head of government so that they can coordinate legislation and resolve differences between the governments. The current Joint Council comprises of:
|Daniel Cleaver MP||Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Dartfordia||Dartfordia||National Party|
|Theresa Thistle MP||Secretary of State for Devolved Affairs||Dartfordia||National Party|
|Thomas O’Malley||First Minister of Southfleet||Southfleet||National Party|
|Peter Freeman||First Minister of Littlebrook||Littlebrook||Socialist Party|
|Charlie Zccio||First Minister of Darenth||Darenth||Liberal Party|
|Henry Cooper||First Minister of Hawley||Hawley||National Party|
|John Stoke||First Minister of Stone||Stone||Socialist Party|
|Beatrice Holden||First Minister of Wilmington||Wilmington||Liberal Party|
|William Drinkwater||Mayor of Hematite||Greater Hematite||Socialist Party|
|Yuuna Kato||Chief Executive of the Jenka-Jenkinson City Council||Jenka-Jenkinson||Jenka First|
|Tom Murphy||Deputy Chief Executive of the Jenka-Jenkinson City Council||Jenka-Jenkinson||Jenkinson Unity Party|
|Michael Whittingdale||Chief Islander||Cydonia Island||Ind.|
|George Albert||Special Representative from the Cross-Straits Union||CSU||None|
There are also Dartfordian Joint Committees, which serve under the Council, made up of departments where the central and devolved governments share competence. These are:
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for the Interior and Home Affairs
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Justice, Civil Law and Criminal Law
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Education
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Health
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Employment and Welfare
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for the Economy, Business, Industry and Technology
Attended by the SoS for Trade and Industry, Technology and Innovation, and Business and Enterprise
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Transport
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for the Environment, Agriculture and Fishing
Attended by the SoS for Energy, Sustainability and Natural Resources, and Agriculture, Fishing and Food Safety
- Dartfordian Joint Committee for Culture, Media and Sport
All Joint Council and Committee meetings are chaired by the Secretary of State for Devolved Affairs and attended by the Special Representative of the Cross-Straits Union. In areas where no competence exists (e.g. for Jenka, Hematite and Cydonia Island), these entities are not represented.
The Kingdom of Dartfordia has a parliamentary government based on the Westminster system. The Parliament of Dartfordia meets in two places, the House of Lords at the Palace of St Albans, and the House of Commons at Wolverhampton Palace. All bills passed are given Royal Assent before becoming law. At the start of every parliamentary term, the King formally opens Parliament in the Palace of St Albans.
State Opening of Parliament
As a tradition dating back to the early Twentieth Century, the King does not invite the Commons to attend the State Opening in the Lords, as he ‘intends’ to only proclaim open the House of Lords. This began due to the decision in 1903 for the Emperor Charles II to prevent the Commons from sitting. During the state opening, with the Commons in Hematite and the Lords in Burnham, Charles II only proclaimed the opening of the Lords. This deeply angered members of the Commons, and was very unpopular amongst the public. Over the next two Parliaments, Charles proclaimed the opening of the Commons, as had been tradition, but then in 1906 he attempted to prohibit them from sitting again. However, when the Lords Commission was read (‘That His Imperial Majesty doth wish to proclaim open a Parliament of one soul in the House of Lords in his City of Burnham’), a spy travelled to the Commons and notified the Speaker, who was able to travel by train to the House of Lords to interrupt the King, who travelled by horse and cart. This continued for a further two years, before the Emperor reluctantly restored the old tradition.
In 1913, however, Emperor Paul attempted to do the same, and once again a spy informed the Speaker of the Commons. At the start of every Parliament since, when a Lords Commission is issued prior to the King’s arrival, a Commons informant (nowadays the Chief Messenger of the Commons to the Lords) leaves the Palace by car and notifies the Speaker. The Speaker then, accompanied by the Prime Minister, leader of the Opposition, the Messenger and the Sergeant-at-Arms, travels to the Palace where, just before the King reads out his proclamation, he humbly demands of the King that the rights of the Commons be respected. The King ‘reluctantly’ agrees, opens Parliament, then reads the King’s Speech written by the government. During the first State Opening after a dissolution (i.e. an election), the King first summons a Parliament by proclamation issued before the election, usually setting a date 2-3 days before the State Opening, allowing members to elect a Speaker and approve the Prime Minister. The State Opening then takes place as usual, though the Speaker, in addition to demanding the King the rights of the Commons, notifies him that they have been elected Speaker and the Commons have approved his choice of Prime Minister. Then, between the proclamation and the speech, the King gives the Speaker his Royal Approbation.
When an an Act is given Royal Assent, a Commission is formed in both the Commons and the Lords to notify them. If it is an amendment to the Constitution, then the King assents to it personally in the House of Lords. Unlike State Openings, however, a Commission is read in the Commons beforehand to inform them of the King’s arrival.
House of Commons
The House of Commons consists of 600 members elected using Single Transferable Vote with constituencies sized from 2-7. Serve terms of four years, changing only at general elections. The Speaker is Michael Williams MP. The Commons is the dominant and more powerful of the two chambers, and can override the House of Lords if, on the second attempt, a bill gets more than two-thirds of support within the Commons. It was formed in 1801, with the merger of the Southfleetian Bauernkammer (‘Peasant’s Chamber’) and the Littlebrookian Domus Plebis (House of the Commoners), though continued to meet in the Bauernkammer chamber in Burnham until they moved into Wolverhampton Palace in 1894.
Speeches from international delegates occur here, and usually the public gallery for these instances is reserved for members of the House of Lords, devolved parliaments and assemblies, and former Prime Ministers and other public officials.
House of Commons of the Kingdom of Dartfordia
|Type||Lower chamber of the bicameral Parliament of the Kingdom of Dartfordia|
|Speaker||Michael Williams MP|
|Leader of the Commons||Christopher Martin MP|
|Shadow Leader of the Commons||Steward Gardner MP|
|Political groups||HM Government:
Supply and confidence agreement:
HM Most Loyal Opposition
Other opposition parties
|Length of term||4 years|
|Electoral system||Single Transferable Vote|
|Last election||April 2016|
House of Lords
The House of Lords is composed of 315 members made up of 120 ‘regional’, 180 ‘functional’ and 15 ‘additional’ members, all serving a non-renewable term of 16 years. 20 regional members are sent from each of the six provinces, with 5 per region being elected every 4 years. All regional members are nominated by the devolved government, approved by the devolved legislatures and appointed by the monarch. The 180 functional members consist of various experts nominated by trade unions, important charities and industrial groups (e.g. General Medical Council, National Union of Teachers, Union of Agricultural Farmers) into 9 equally-sized ‘Vocational Panels’ and elected by an electoral college consisting of all directly elected politicians (from Parish councillors to MCSPs). 5 members per Vocational Panel are elected every 4 years. Additional members are made up of former Speakers of the House of Commons, a member elected to be Speaker of the House of Lords, retired Supreme Court justices and former Prime Ministers. All members of the Lords, are vetted by the Lords Appointments Commission, which may reject members for being of ‘unsuitable character’ for the Lords. Additional members are nominated exclusively by the House of Commons.
The House of Lords formed in 1877 as a merged of the Southfleetian Kirkekammeret (Church Chamber) and the Oberhaus (House of Lords), and the Littlebrookian Domus Nobilitatis (House of Nobility). Much like the Commons, it continued to meet in the former Oberhaus chamber in Burnham until 1907. Between 1801-2924 the Lords grew from 385 members to 1,719, many of whom were hereditary peers or bishops, and a small number appointed by the King. The 1924 Constitution limited the Lords to 500 appointed by the King, and 150 Clergymen, though the latter were removed by the Disestablishment Act 1937. The House was reformed further with the Constitutional Reform Act 1996 – to limit the chamber to 300 regional and functional members. This was done to satisfy the need for a revisionary chamber and a chamber to protect the rights of states. Additional members were allowed in the Constitutional Reform Act on the historic basis that Speakers, Prime Ministers and Supreme Court Justices were all traditionally given Life Peerages in the past.
The Lord Speaker is also made an Additional Member to ensure that they can serve a full term, and be reelected to a second term, and to allow the region or functionary organisation to elect a new member in place of the now impartial Speaker. The current Lord Speaker is Baroness Brand.
House of Lords of the Kingdom of Dartfordia
|Type||Upper chamber of the bicameral Parliament of the Kingdom of Dartfordia|
|Leader of the Lords||Baroness Farthing|
|Shadow Leader of the Lords||Lord Martin|
|Length of term||16 years|
House of Lords Chamber. When the King is in attendance, the chairs, desks and platform in the middle are removed, as are the chairs, tables and front desk in the Speaker’s area. A Throne is placed where the Speaker usually sits, and there is usually a smaller throne for the Consort next to it.
Like most democracies on Mundus, Dartfordia has an independent and generally effective judicial system. Unlike most, however, it has not one, not two, but three separate judicial systems. The most common, used in the ‘Southern’ regions of Dartfordia, consists of Borough, County and High Courts, and Courts of Appeal. The secondary system, in the former communist regions, consists of First and District Courts, and a Superior Court. A third system, not shown below, is used in Cydonia Island – the island north of Stone that remained part of the Kingdom during division.
‘Southern regions’ include Darenth, Hawley, Wilmington and Southfleet. There are overall 1322 Borough Courts (of which only 900 serve actual boroughs) and 93 County Courts. Each province has its own High Court and Court of Appeal. Prior to division, the Northern region had an identical court system, but the Courts Act 1968, passed by the Communist Littlebrook government, ‘simplified’ the court process.
Since reunification, there have been a number of minor changes to the responsibilities of each court, and major changes to appointment processes and the principles of law. However, the ‘three step’ court system still exists. Thee are 502 First Courts, which feed into 9 District Courts and the single Superior Court of Littlebrook and Stone.
Important cases on national law, both criminal and civil, from the Courts of Appeal and the Superior Court are sent to the Supreme Court of Dartfordia. Cases of provincial law are settled either at the High Courts or the Superior Court, while cases of Cross-Straits law are settled in the Cross-Strais Courts of Justice. The CSCJ also has advisory jurisdiction over the Mundus Convention on Universal Rights and the Fair Seas Concordat, but the Supreme Court maintains its position as the supreme court of the land on those matters.
Supreme Court of Dartfordia: Consists of 12 judges, each appointed by the King (on the advice of the Prime Minister, who is in turn advised by the Judicial Appointments Commission) for a life tenure (with mandatory retirement at 75). Cases are usually heard by 3, 5, 6 or 9 judges at a time, depending on the seriousness and importance of the case. The court selects its own President and Vice President, both of whom also serve life terms.
Cross-Straits Court of Justice: Made up of one senior judge and two junior judges from each member state, who are nominated by each country’s Supreme Court (or equivalent) and approved by the Court of Justice itself. All cases must be heard by at least one judge from each country, though decisions of major constitutional importance require all senior judges to attend.
Judicial Committee of the Privy Council: A judicial relic – the supreme court of Dartfordia prior to 1921. It consists of current and former (pre-retirement) Supreme Court justices, the three Dartfordian Cross-Straits judges, any Dartfordian judge representing Dartfordia in an international court (e.g. International Court of Justice, Uppsala Court), and Privy Counsellors who are (or have been) judges of any of the four Courts of Appeal or Superior Court. Cases are usually heard 3, 5, 6 or 9 judges at a time.
|Thomas Moore||Commonwealth Treaty Organisation||Representative to the General Assembly and Security Council|