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Member of Parliament
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Member of Parliament

A Member of Parliament, or MP, is a representative elected by the voters of an electoral district to a parliament; in the Westminster system, specifically to the lower house, or House of Commons.

Table of contents
1 British MPs
2 Other countries

British MPs

The British Parliament is divided into the House of Commons and the House of Lords; though it is often assumed that an MP is a member of Commons, they can be a member of either house. Nonetheless, the letters "MP" are appended as a post-nominal to an individual's name only if that person is a member of the House of Commons; that House has 659 members.

MPs in the House of Commons are elected for a period of five years or until Parliament is dissolved. The members of the House of Lords are officially appointed by the King or Queen, but the selection is done by the British Prime Minister.

There are several special members of Parliament, including the Prime Minister, other government ministers, the Chief Whip of each party, Privy Counsellors, and the Speaker of the House.

Members of Parliament are technically forbidden to resign their seats. However, appointment to a "paid office under the Crown" disqualifies an MP from sitting in the Commons, and two nominally paid offices - the Chiltern Hundreds and the Manor of Northstead - exist to allow members to resign from the House.

See also: MPs elected in British Elections 2001

See also: The number_of_British_MPs at different points in history.

Notable Former MPs

External Links

See also: List of British MPs

Other countries


In Australia, the term Member of Parliament refers specifically to a member of the Australian House of Representatives.

See also: List of members of the Australian House of Representatives


In Canada, the term Member of Parliament refers specifically to a member of the Canadian House of Commons.

See also: Members of the Canadian House of Commons