Queen Elizabeth II unveils British gov't plan - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Queen Elizabeth II unveils British gov't plan

By JILL LAWLESS

Associated Press LONDON (AP) - Queen Elizabeth II unveiled the British government's legislative agenda Wednesday in a ceremony that combined a sumptuous display of pomp and power with a slim slate of bills on crime, pensions and fracking.

The annual Queen's Speech is both a policy statement and an ermine-draped display of regal grandeur. It is read by the monarch but written by the government and marked the final opportunity for Prime Minister David Cameron's government to offer ideas ahead of a May 2015 election.

The 11 bills outlined in the 10-minute speech included changes to pension plans, a five-pence (8 cent) levy on supermarket plastic bags and a measure giving voters limited powers to recall wayward lawmakers.

The plans also included tougher penalties for human trafficking and a bill to safeguard Good Samaritans in the case of lawsuits stemming from actions taken in an emergency.

More contentious were moves to encourage companies to drill for gas through hydraulic fracturing - a practice that faces strong opposition from British environmentalists.

The monarch traveled from Buckingham Palace to Parliament in the resplendent new Diamond Jubilee State Coach, as thousands of tourists lined the streets.

The horse-drawn coach, which was made in Australia, is lined in yellow silk and made up of pieces donated by historic sites and organizations. The seat handrails are from the Royal Yacht Britannia, while the window frames and interior panels include material from Canterbury Cathedral, 10 Downing Street, and the Antarctic bases of Capt. Robert Scott and Ernest Shackleton.

Lawmakers walked from the House of Commons to the House of Lords to hear the queen read the speech - but only after slamming the door in her messenger's face to symbolize their independence from the crown.

Amid the ritual, a moment of unexpected drama arose when a page boy fainted with a thud just after the queen announced that Britain would work toward a "comprehensive nuclear agreement with Iran."

Officials said later that the boy was fine.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Director: FBI won't repeat mistakes noted in watchdog report

    Director: FBI won't repeat mistakes noted in watchdog report

    Monday, June 18 2018 2:40 PM EDT2018-06-18 18:40:23 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 9:02 PM EDT2018-06-19 01:02:26 GMT
    (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite). Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, left, and FBI Director Christopher Wray wait to testify as the Senate Judiciary Committee examines the internal report of the FBI's Clinton email probe and the role ...(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite). Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, left, and FBI Director Christopher Wray wait to testify as the Senate Judiciary Committee examines the internal report of the FBI's Clinton email probe and the role ...
    The Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee says the Justice Department has a "serious credibility problem.".
    The Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee says the Justice Department has a "serious credibility problem.".
  • Unapologetic Trump digs in on immigration despite outrage

    Unapologetic Trump digs in on immigration despite outrage

    Monday, June 18 2018 4:20 AM EDT2018-06-18 08:20:01 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 9:01 PM EDT2018-06-19 01:01:58 GMT
    (Butch Comegys/The Times-Tribune via AP). U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks on immigration policy and law enforcement actions at Lackawanna College in downtown Scranton, Pa., on Friday, June 15, 2018.(Butch Comegys/The Times-Tribune via AP). U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks on immigration policy and law enforcement actions at Lackawanna College in downtown Scranton, Pa., on Friday, June 15, 2018.

    Nearly 2,000 children were separated from their families over a six-week period in April and May after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a new "zero-tolerance" policy that refers all cases of illegal entry for criminal prosecution.

    Nearly 2,000 children were separated from their families over a six-week period in April and May after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a new "zero-tolerance" policy that refers all cases of illegal entry for criminal prosecution.

  • Compulsive video-game playing could be mental health problem

    Compulsive video-game playing could be mental health problem

    Monday, June 18 2018 5:20 AM EDT2018-06-18 09:20:00 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 8:32 PM EDT2018-06-19 00:32:00 GMT
    In its latest revision to an international disease classification manual, the U.N. health agency said Monday that classifying "Gaming Disorder" as a separate condition will 'serve a public health purpose for countries.' (Source: Pixabay)In its latest revision to an international disease classification manual, the U.N. health agency said Monday that classifying "Gaming Disorder" as a separate condition will 'serve a public health purpose for countries.' (Source: Pixabay)

    The World Health Organization says that compulsively playing video games now qualifies as a new mental health condition, in a move that some critics warn may risk stigmatizing its young players.

    The World Health Organization says that compulsively playing video games now qualifies as a new mental health condition, in a move that some critics warn may risk stigmatizing its young players.

Powered by Frankly