This blog posting represents the views of the author, David Fosberry. Those opinions may change over time. They do not constitute an expert legal or financial opinion.
If you have comments on this blog posting, please email me .
The Opinion Blog is organised by threads, so each post is identified by a thread number ("Major" index) and a post number ("Minor" index). If you want to view the index of blogs, click here to download it as an Excel spreadsheet.
Click here to see the whole Opinion Blog.
To view, save, share or refer to a particular blog post, use the link in that post (below/right, where it says "Show only this post").
Posted on 9th January 2017
|Show only this post|
Show all posts in this thread.
After I read this BBC news report this morning, I think the question "Is The UK Government The Enemy of Democracy?" is a reasonable one, to which the British voters need the answer.
Non-Brits may not be aware of how the House of Lords works. In some ways, it is like the US Senate, but Lords are not elected; they are instead appointed by government. Each government appoints a few, so most of the Lords were appointed by previous governments. Appointments are for life (there are still a few hereditary peers, who mostly do not vote, but no new hereditary peers are created nowadays). There has long been talk of abolishing the House of Lords and replacing it with an elected body, in the same way that there is talk of abolishing the monarchy, but there are no real plans to do it, and the public seems to have mixed feelings on the issue.
The House of Lords cannot completely block legislation (neither can the Queen); they can either pass bills or send bills back to the House of Commons with amendments, and that they can only do a limited number of times (three, I believe).
Now, however, the government has said that the House of Lords will face an "overwhelming" public call to be abolished if it opposes the bill to trigger Article 50 (to begin the process of Brexit - leaving the EU).
Hold on a minute! There are only two choices here:
It doesn't even matter which of the above views is right. The idea that abolition can be wielded as a punishment for "bad behaviour" fits neither of the above scenarios, and is nothing more than corrupt and undemocratic blackmail on the part of Theresa May's government.