House of Lords Reform, the debate continues but will sense prevail?
This post is part of a Twitter conversation with Helene Tyrrell and should be read in conjunction with the post Politics, Democracy and the House of Lords Reform Proposals, I like to carry on some conversations this way when the conversations are with quality people who genuinely want to discuss the particular subject and this is difficult to do within the 140 characters of Twitter.
@dalewood @HeleneTyrrellI take on board the points raised in that link, but what do you mean ‘will clog up the democratic process?
merryVW replied to dalewood1 day ago
The question Helene Tyrrell asked was what did I mean by House of Lords Reform will clog up the system?
Quite apart from the fact that Nick Clegg is proposing to elect the House of Lords by a Proportional Representation (PR) system which will make them unaccountable to the electorate and have them in place for 15 years both of which will damage our democracy, once you have an elected House of Lords it will be human nature for it to grab hold of a perceived legitimacy and be a challenge to the House of Commons which in itself will slow down a legislative program.
Just imagine though if elections to the House of Lords went similar to local Council elections where the results are nearly always against the party in power nationally, a Labour Party dominated House of Lords would course chaos with a Conservative legislative program and that is where the system is likely to get clogged in the name of democracy but achieving quite the opposite.
Finally, once again, why on earth are we wasting time on House of Lords Reform, yes in the name of democracy but it will actually have a negative effect on democracy and cost over
Posted in Politics and Government
- Phil Baker Editor and Political Commentator
Well, currently the House of Lords is only a revising chamber ensuring bills are drafted correctly and suggesting amendments where appropriate, they cannot stop legislation , they can hold legislation up forcing the House of Commons to rethink but in the end the final say is always with the House of Commons, the House of Lords is like a body which sees the wood for the trees. There is also a convention between the House of Commons and the House of Lords which dictates that the House of Lords will not hold up any legislation which appeared in the governing parties manifesto because the electorate had given the party a direct mandate for that particular legislation. Further reading