Addressing constitutional issues…

Lord Norton MSP_7912After the result of the referendum in Scotland, there is much discussion as to what steps to take now to address constitutional issues.  I have variously made the case for a constitutional convention to make sense of where we are constitutionally.  Otherwise, we are in danger of going off half-cock with proposals, the consequences of which – not least for other parts of the constitution – are not thought through.

Mark D’Arcy of BBC Parliament has come up with rather a novel – some may think alarming – idea.  You can read his blog post hereThe salient passage is:

“Already wise heads are shaking in Westminster. To some, the way to change the constitution is by slow, deliberative change. Essentially the ideal process is to clone the constitutional scholar Lord Norton of Louth, sit a dozen of him down in a committee room somewhere, take detailed evidence from the wise and the experienced and ruminate upon it for months – if not years – before producing a careful, nuanced set of proposals with a ready-made consensus behind them.”

The approach finds favour with me, but whether the world is ready for another one of me – never mind a dozen – is another matter.  Perhaps we could settle for some like-minded individuals.

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About Lord Norton

Professor of Government at Hull University, and Member of the House of Lords
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7 Responses to Addressing constitutional issues…

  1. Ged Mirfin says:

    Clearly the ipdated edition of The Constitution in Flux will now be delayed for obvious reasons. The Constitutional Convention however would be s great title. Lots that you could read into that metaphor. In tne meantime I suspect you will be busier than ever!

  2. Glad to see that a bit of science fiction has made it to the blog. BUT I am afraid that real clones at the very least would require an education.

  3. Andrew Grey says:

    At the risk of sounding like an out and out sycophant, I would be very happy with that process. Probably the only way we would get any coherent system at all.

  4. derfelowen says:

    I’m sure I proposed this very solution at a Comparative Legislatures seminar c. 10 years ago!

  5. Croft says:

    “Essentially the ideal process is to clone the constitutional scholar Lord Norton of Louth, sit a dozen of him down in a committee room somewhere,”

    Are you aware of the famous Duke of Wellington cartoon – called iirc “The United Administration”? It was a cabinet made up of Wellingtons each ‘Wellington’ being named along side their Cabinet Office by one of his many titles. I think the quip was the cabinet are of ‘one mind’

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