I have already drawn attention to some of the problems with the House of Lords Reform Bill. It is fundamentally flawed. Supporters keep claiming that it has taken 100 years to bring forward a Bill. One would have thought that in that time it would have been possible to draft a coherent and logical measure. Apparently not. There are some basic problems with the Bill:
1. It doesn’t deal with the functions of the second chamber.
2. It doesn’t deal adequately with the relationship between the two chambers.
3. It introduces the regional list system of election which places power in the hands of the parties.
4. It does not provide for the accountability of the members. We are told we are not accountable. Well, neither will be the members of the elected chamber. (Indeed, I could develop an argument that they will be less accountable.)
5. Members having been elected are not expected to undertake constituency casework. Electors having chosen members of the second chamber are apparently expected to get short shrift if they have the temerity to approach them to ask for help in dealing with a particular problem.
6. Despite attempts by Government to claim otherwise (in a costings document that is basically a disgrace), it will cost more than the existing House.
One can see how the Bill has been expertly drafted to restore trust in politics….