Electoral reform


ConservativeHome asks whether the government’s new found enthusiasm for electoral reform could have anything to do with the Conservatives’ poll lead (recently put as wide as 16 percent). Frankly, it had not occurred to me that there would be any other reason for it. The official line, however, is that Jack Straw, the Justice Secretary, is worried that once the House of Lords is elected by proportional representation, the supremacy of the House of Commons will be challenged.

The simple solution to that concern would be to stop messing around with the Lords, since it works perfectly well as it is. They actually scrutinize legislation (unlike their elected colleagues), they stand up to the government (unlike their elected colleagues), and they don’t even get paid (again, unlike their elected colleagues). Unfortunately the government can’t bear to just leave things alone, and have set their hearts on making the upper house more ‘democratic’ (i.e. ‘more obedient to the government whips’).

Or maybe I’m just being cynical...