• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Reformation of The House of Lords

Extracts from this document...


Reformation of The House of Lords B.Pringle The current composition of The House of Lords initial composition consists of 92 hereditary peers who are dominantly the most recent ones appointed. This is to provide some continuity with the existing system. Each newly appointed member of the House is a life member. There is a maximum number of members, 700. New members are added after every UK General Election, to bring the total membership up to the notional maximum. No new members are added to replace members who die or retire in between General Elections. The overall composition is roughly in proportion to the long-term popularity of the various parties. Particular elections only affect the proportion of new members added. This makes the House stable politically. Another aspect, which makes the composition of the House diverse and objective, is the presence of 'crossbench peers'. These peers are not affiliated with a particular party; this group makes up about a third of the House. ...read more.


Although the countryside may be a minority they are a powerful community and representation in the Lords made up for their sometimes-apparent lack of representation in the Commons. The continuation of hereditary peerage would remove the often-scandalous issue of the appointing of life peers. Life peers could be seen as political payoffs by the government of the day. This sort of appointment may give the government of the time a short-term benefit, but it's no way to appoint life-long members of our parliament system. There are also many arguments for the following through of the plan to completely abolish hereditary peerage. From a Labour sympathetic political stance it is easy to see why they want to abolish hereditary peers. Any time the Tories want their specific view made apparent and a majority in the Lords, they can wheel in (in some cases literally) large amounts of conservative peers who have little to no actual political interest in the matter. ...read more.


This sort of distrust from one tier of our political system to the other cannot be healthy for our political system and so obviously needed reform. The Wakeham commission made several recommendations on the second stage of the House of Lords reform (whether they will be put in place we are yet to see, but the outlook is doubtful after initial response to the 'white paper'). Around 20% of the membership would be made up of independent cross benchers, and existing life peers would stay on to ensure a smooth change over to the new arrangements. Most members of the reformed chamber would remain appointed by an independent commission. The political balance of the second chamber should reflect votes cast at the general election. A totally independent appointments system, in which the prime minister and government would play no part. A statutory minimum of 30% women members, fair representation for ethnic minority groups, and a broader range of religious representation than at present; Increased powers to scrutinise the executive and challenge government legislation. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Politics essays

  1. The constitutional change in the House of Lords

    In addition, Labour would sustain independent cross-bench attendance of life peers, thus no political party could obtain a majority in the House of Lords. Lastly, a committee of both Houses of Parliament is set up to review the further changes and then submit the proposals for reform on the particular future changes.

  2. Civil Service Reform.

    The National Audit Office found money had been wasted, no clear budgets were set or agreed, and costs accelerated without proper checks. Most of this was because the ministry was paying contractors on an hourly rate and not checking whether they were there.

  1. What are the arguments for and against electing all the members of the second ...

    The unelected nature of the house would also mean that any revision of bills brought from the House of Commons could slightly alter the initially intended purpose proposed by the elected lower house. As a result the outcome would be a bill finalised by an unelected body and as such

  2. What options do the Government have in their attempts to reform the House of ...

    It could become packed with unrepresentative, i.e. not specialist in any subjects like appointed peers would be. This option is unlikely as MP's see it as a threat to the Commons power, however some MP's may back it.

  1. "The present make up and powers of the House of Lords are unsatisfactory and ...

    Under the Parliament Acts, Bills must still be considered by both Houses, but if the Lords delay its approval for more than a year, the Bill can be enacted without their consent. After the 1949 Parliament Act, the House of Lords were almost left powerless, the House was like a

  2. A House Divided.

    Men and women in the Southern colonies did not work together at all. On the contrary, social life in the Northern colonies proved to be much different. Unlike Virginia and Maryland colonists, New Englanders moved across the Atlantic in whole families. This led to a more evenly balanced sex ratio.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work