Wednesday, 28 October 2015

The Lords need abolishing. Certainly not "reformed" to suit the Tories.

The Tories reaction to Monday high defeat in the Lords over Tax Credits  reminds me of a fans reaction to a Football or Rugby fan seeing one of their clubs favourite players signing for their local rivals.

All of the qualities that the player has is forgotten and any error in tier game substituted as well as cries of disloyalty .

The scene of Tory MPs in the Commons and Television,and Radio interviews pitting Unelected before the word Lords was risible it seems that they have only just discovered this after over 200 years.

The argument over whether the Unelected Lords (as the Tories now call it is debatable.

It appears that the Tories claim that this was a money bill which the Laws should not oppose seems false 

as Peter Black points out (even Peter's right sometimes.

  Under the Parliament Act a money bill has to be certified as such by the Speaker of the House of Commons. Osborne's tax credit cuts were in a statutory instrument and not certified as such. The Lords were totally entitled to do what they did.

Nor is the  claim that it was in the Tories Manifesto if it was it was hidden away in a package of  £12billion of mystery cutsand not outlined.

Though there was a pledge to

Stop tax credits for families with incomes over £50,000, cut government contributions to Child Trust Funds for all but the poorest third of families and families with disabled children
The current proposal appear to affect people on much lower incomes.

The Tories reaction  has been mocked 

But the prospect of Cameron reforming the the Unelected Undemocratic Lords to suit them when they have a majority in the Commons is worrying .

That does not mean that we should be supporting the Lords . It should be abolished and replaced with an elected Federal Chamber or at least one based on Proportional  Representation.

What should not happen is it being reformed by the Government of the Day Left or Right especial y one that was elected with the support of only 24% of eligible voters to  suit them rather than the democratic will of the people of these Islands.



  1. The whole HoL thing is a distraction to help the Tories move the discussion away from their attempt to take tax credits from the poorest elements of our society. There is no way that Osbourne and co are going to introduce an elected Lords. Just smoke and mirrors to distract attention from the fact that he has failed in an attempt to make the poorest pay for the mistake of bankers.

  2. Lord Strathclyde selected for a high speed review of Houseof Lords. Strathclyde former Tory leader in the Lords and scion of the establishment is one of the few hereditaries left in the chamber. Don't hold your breath for significant change. What is the betting it will all be forgotten in a month.

  3. Lot of bluff and bluster.Lord Strathclyde has already decided that the Lords have, "behaved wrongly, deplorably and unnecessarily". So we have an open mind there. Tory party and their friends in the press are outraged that the Lords have blocked a "tax" measure. This line has been swallowed by the main terrestial news programmes. The grungling admission from the Leader of the HoC, Chris Grayling tax credits are a benifits issue and not a tax measure suggests the review is not necessary.Just more distractions tocover the Tory embarrassment.

  4. Lord Lisvane, (Cardiff boy made good) former clerk to the House of Commons and leading constitutional expert pointed out that the original 2002 Credit Act made it clear that any reglations under the act need to be approved by both houses.There are many reasons why there should be a review into the House of Lords, but no reason for a review over the revent tax credit vote.