House of Lords

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Lord Ashcroft jets off into the sunset

31 March 2015 16:49

So farewell then Lord Ashcroft: well, not quite. The former Tory Party treasurer has announced today that he has resigned his life peerage, yet will be able to keep his… Continue reading

Mohammed Emwazi studied at the University of Westminster (Photo: Jack Taylor/Getty)

If ‘non-violent extremists’ can’t express their views at universities, where can they?

4 March 2015 12:49

Last month, the government’s Counter-Terrorism & Security Bill became law. One provision is the legal obligation it places upon ‘specified authorities’ to ‘prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’. ‘Specified authorities’… Continue reading

The House of Lords is beyond reproach, apparently. (ALASTAIR GRANT/AFP/GettyImages)

Jobs for the boys and girls

8 August 2014 10:21

Mr S can’t help but notice that there is no Ukip peer among the list of the newly ennobled. This is surprising. Nigel Farage has survived attacks, smears and a… Continue reading

Baroness Betty Boothroyd is leading the charge against the government's exclusion of the Leader of the House of Lords, Baroness Stowell, from Cabinet. (Image: Getty)

Betty Boothroyd and peers set to rebuke Cameron over Baroness Stowell’s exclusion from Cabinet

28 July 2014 17:13

Update: In a sign of the strength of feeling in the Lords on this matter, Boothroyd’s motion rebuking Cameron passed by 177 votes to 29. This foolish, unforced error now… Continue reading

Members of both houses of parliament fil

Cameron’s Lords mess

22 July 2014 20:25

In the last reshuffle, David Cameron made Tina Stowell the leader of the House of Lords. But, astonishingly, he didn’t make her a full member of the Cabinet, giving her… Continue reading

Michael Dobbs at Netflix's "House Of Cards" New York Premiere at Alice Tully Hall on January 30, 2013 in New York City.

Michael Dobbs shuffles Cards in the House of Lords

14 May 2014 12:26

Filming of season three of Netflix’s House of Cards will begin in four weeks’ time in Maryland, creator Michael Dobbs revealed at Norman Tebbit’s book launch last night. Lord Dobbs,… Continue reading

Home Secretary Theresa May Speaks At The College of Policing Conference

Peers launch bid to neuter controversial ‘stateless’ plan in Immigration Bill

28 March 2014 12:44

Remember that rather curious change to the Immigration Bill that would render foreign-born terror suspects ‘stateless’ that ministers managed to sneak through while most MPs were in a tizz about… Continue reading

Mark Harper resigned after discovering his cleaner was working illegally.

Revolts over Immigration Bill loom in House of Lords

11 March 2014 16:25

Awkward rows about who employs ‘cheap foreign labour’ aside, the immigration issue is going to blow up again in the next couple of weeks when the Immigration Bill reaches report… Continue reading

Demonstration Outside Houses Of Parliament As MPs Debate Lobbying Bill

The Lobbying Bill is bad for liberty

15 January 2014 10:00

The Prime Minister was on to something when as Leader of the Opposition he said that lobbying was ‘the next big scandal waiting to happen.’ But the Lobbying Bill’s methods… Continue reading

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The Quiet and Sorry Death of Liberalism, Part CCXXXIV

10 January 2014 14:31

The whole point of the House of Lords is that it lacks democratic legitimacy. This, as they say, is a feature not a bug. A damn good feature too. It… Continue reading

The constitutional referendum in Ireland has failed to capture the public's imagination. (PETER MUHLY/AFP/Getty Images)

If you think the House of Lords is bad for democracy, try the Irish senate

4 October 2013 20:55

Waves of apathy, a tsunami of indifference, engulfed Ireland for today’s constitutional referendums. When I was over there last week, I was more interested in the thing than anyone I… Continue reading

The House of Lords is beyond reproach, apparently. (ALASTAIR GRANT/AFP/GettyImages)

When is corruption not corrupt? When the establishment says it isn’t

5 August 2013 17:54

Mr Justice Tugendhat delivered a ferocious verdict last week. Undercover reporters from the Sunday Times claimed they had found Peter Cruddas, co-Treasurer of the Conservative Party, offering influence in return… Continue reading

Will Nigel Farage explode the political establishment? Illustration: Stephen Collins.

Working peerages – a win for UKIP?

1 August 2013 12:21

UKIP is up in arms about the new working peers (or at least it’s pretending to be). The Greens get a peer and the Lib Dems get many peers; but… Continue reading

Members of both houses of parliament fil

New working peers announced

1 August 2013 11:08

Here is the list of new working peers. It features a number of donors and cronies, which is not remotely surprisingly. And yesterday’s party hacks get gifted a tomorrow - Annabel Goldie being the most conspicuous example. There are one or two interesting… Continue reading

Baroness Verma saved the day in the Moses Room on Tuesday night when she offered Baroness Worthington a fruit pastille. (SHAUN CURRY/AFP/Getty Images)

Rumpus on the red corridor

26 July 2013 11:29

The House of Lords’ committee rooms are not ordinarily the setting for a ruckus; but there was rumpus in the Moses Room on Tuesday night, when the greybeards were musing… Continue reading

Peers pay tribute to Margaret Thatcher.

‘If only people could see the real Margaret Thatcher’: Lords pay tribute

10 April 2013 18:52

Today’s debates in Parliament about Baroness Thatcher were supposed to be a tribute to the first female Prime Minister. If you were looking for the most faithful rendition of this,… Continue reading

Will bloggers escape from the shackles of press regulation?

‘Small-scale’ bloggers hear the chimes of freedom

25 March 2013 16:57

Bloggers of the United Kingdom rejoice – an exemption from the all-new press controls looks to be on the way. We are waiting today to see if any of the… Continue reading

Oona King on the campaign trail during the 2005 election. She lost her seat to George Galloway. Image: Getty.

Oona King’s return to the spotlight

26 February 2013 12:44

The Lords’ terrace was transformed into a theatre yesterday evening to stage an adaptation of Blair Babe Oona King’s House Music diaries, which recount her career as MP for Bethnal Green… Continue reading

Those involved in the cross-party talks have praised Oliver Letwin for the way he is managing them. Picture: Getty

Leveson Royal Charter plan remains uncharted territory

11 January 2013 17:50

Strong words in the Lords today about the media and the government’s stance on Leveson, but what are the discussions like between the three parties behind the scenes? Though they… Continue reading

Lord Fowler speaking on press regulation in the House of Lords this morning.

Lessons from the Lords on Leveson

11 January 2013 11:35

Peers are spending today debating the Leveson report. They’ve been at it for an hour and a half, and will continue debating until 5pm, but the first few speeches have… Continue reading


Exclusive: John Nash is the new schools minister

10 January 2013 15:00

The new schools minister is John Nash. He succeeds Lord Hill who has gone off to replace Tom Strathclyde as leader of the House of Lords. Nash, a venture capitalist,… Continue reading

Lord Strathclyde: a skilful leader who will be missed. Photo: Getty Images

Lord Strathclyde resigns over frustration with Lib Dem peers

7 January 2013 12:31

Lord Strathclyde was a skilful leader of the House of Lords. An immensely charming man, he was — generally — able to coax legislation through a chamber where the government… Continue reading

The Queen attends a Motability event in Westminster Hall. Peers may revolt over changes in eligibility rules for Motability cars. Picture: Getty

Government could face another welfare rebellion in the Lords

27 December 2012 13:01

Remember those rebellions in the Lords on welfare earlier this year? Well, the fight hasn’t disappeared entirely from the Upper Chamber. Secondary legislation filling in the detail of the Welfare… Continue reading

House of Lords

Will the Lords really slay the gay marriage bill?

17 December 2012 18:19

Think the Commons is in uproar at the moment over gay marriage? Just wait until the legislation makes its way into the House of Lords. The received wisdom is that… Continue reading

Oxford students call on Lord Patten to devote sufficient time to being Chancellor of Oxford University during the BBC crisis. Image: Getty.

Oxford students: Chris Patten needs to devote time to being our Chancellor

14 November 2012 15:54

As students at Oxford University, we are told repeatedly by tutors, proctors, and the Chancellor himself that we’re not allowed to do much outside our degree. We cannot do more… Continue reading