Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Lib Dems win UK Parliamentary Byelection (though they are unlikely to trumpet it)

Yes the Liberal Democrats have won a Parliamentary Election though I very much doubt they will be plastering it all over their leaflets and the result is nor due until today

Because in what must be the smallest franchise in Western Democracy only  three Liberal Democrat Peers can vote in the  Election of a Hereditary Peers to become a Member of the House of Lords and part of our Legislature..

Thank God for Wikipedia because the method is hard to find out 

 Lord Avebury, one of the 3 hereditary peers elected by the Liberal Democrats, died on 14 February 2016. A by-election to replace him will be held by postal voting from 12 to 18 April, with the result announced on 19 April.[34]

 Following the passing of the House of Lords Act 1999, the number of hereditary peers entitled to sit in the House of Lords was reduced to ninety-two. Ninety of the first ninety-two were elected by all the hereditary peers before the passing of the reform. Since November 2002, by-elections have been held to fill vacancies left by deaths of those peers. Since the passing of the House of Lords Reform Act 2014, by-elections have also been held to fill vacancies left by the resignation of those peers.
Before the passing of the 1999 Act, the Lords approved a Standing Order stating that the remaining hereditary peers shall consist of:

  • 2 peers to be elected by the Labour hereditary peers
  • 42 peers to be elected by the Conservative hereditary peers
  • 3 peers to be elected by the Liberal Democrat hereditary peers
  • 28 peers to be elected by the Crossbench hereditary peers
  • 15 peers to be elected by the whole House
  • The holders of the offices of Earl Marshal and Lord Great Chamberlain to be ex officio members
 Elections must be held within three months of a vacancy occurring and take place under the Alternative Vote system.] All those on the Register of Hereditary Peers are eligible to stand, but only sitting (the "excepted") hereditary peers may vote (which can result in very small electorates, such as three voters in the 2003 election of Lord Grantchester). 

Labour Hereditary Peers' By-Election, October 2003[9]
Candidate Count 1
Green tickLord Grantchester[8] 2
Viscount Hanworth 1
9 Others 0
Electorate: 3   Valid: 3   Spoilt: 0   Quota:   Turnout: 3

This farce will be repeated today

The 7 hereditary peers who have registered their candidacies are:

 So what we have is a Parliamentary Election in which the number of candidates exceed the electorate.
 These Elections rules seem complex because some times the whole of the Lords vote, I suppose  if the number of party Members  sitting exceed the guaranteed quota.

The fact that someone like me who is interested in Politics  has to turn to Wikipedia to at least get some idea of the rules speaks volumes.

Indeed I wonder how many ELECTED MPs are aware what has been going om.

I am not sure which is more insulting

The fact that we have an unelected legislature  

That it still contains people who are there by birth right.

They try to give some kind of credence  by holding byelections with a franchise of three.

There's a fourth and it's that  these "byelections" are clear evidence that the Hereditary principle is clearly  discriminatory against women.

There are a few Hereditary Women Peers but I wonder if we can see this as Human Rights legislation  in which  Women  are effectively barred from parts of our Legislature?

With the argument over the  European Union having a say in how the UK is run being part of the Brexit campaign, perhaps we should look closer to home before we moan about undemocratic institutions interfering in our democracy?

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