Coat of Parliament

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This article is part of Altverse II.
A coat. The Supreme Court of Astoria described the role of first minister as a coat that a member of Parliament wears, instead of being an office in its own right.

In Astorian constitutional law, a coat of Parliament is any title, role, or distinction that is not an office of the Commonwealth in its own right, but merely an additional duty Parliament may confer upon an individual. That is, Parliament "puts the duty on to a person, like a coat". The role of the first minister is the quintessential example of a coat of Parliament. The term was first used by the Supreme Court of Astoria to resolve an apparent contradiction between articles 22 and 32 of the Astorian Constitution, which prohibits members of Parliament from holding any other office while in Parliament and mandates that the first minister must be from either chamber, respectively. The Court, in Uberti v. McNaughton (1868), held that there is no contradiction between the two articles as the role of first minister is not an office of the Commonwealth but an extra distinction upon a member of Parliament, which confers some additional powers and obligations. Furthermore, the Court noted that article 46 specifies that in the event of the president's death, resignation, or removal from office, the first minister becomes president and "[ceases] to be a member of Parliament," which indicates the Constitution intends for the first minister to be a member of Parliament during their term in that role until they enter a 'proper' office of the Commonwealth, such as the presidency.

Staff members of the House of Commons and the Senate, such as the clerks, chaplains, compilers, sergeants-at-arms, and the first minister pro tempore have also been described as coats of Parliament, though not ruled as such in any federal court.