I blogged yesterday and a few days before that that the current Labour party leadership race provides the perfect opportunity for Labour and the SNP to kill off the House of Lords and replace it with something less ridiculous. Today, The Scotland on Sunday today reports that the SNP’s Angus Brendan McNeil is now pushing that agenda forward by asking the other opposition parties not to nominate new Lords. Jeremy Corbyn has, sensibly and rightly, signed up. Every other candidate for the Labour leadership and Deputy leadership should now be challenged on the issue as a matter of urgency.
The Scotland on Sunday report suggests that the UK government has the final say. Journos pretty much have to put that in as a balancer. In truth, with no opposition benches the House of Lords would be a dead duck. It’s really as simple as that. Labour and the SNP, working together, can make a progressive change to the nation on a scale which no opposition party in democratic history has been able to achieve before.
Ah, but wait for the voices saying how complicated it (i.e. democracy) would be. How it would take years to even think about it. Absolute nonsense. Drawing up plans for a modest-sized revising chamber based upon democratic elections across the UK (for now) would be entirely straightforward. The alternative – people literally buying their way into our legislature – is the one we’d pay the bigger price for. Selling seats in a legislature is corruption, pure and simple.
“Hey, developing world state, if you don’t democtratise and sort out the corruption we’ll cancel your aid budget. Ah, Tarquin, thanks for that £2m – here’s your lifetime seat in the upper house”?