House of Lords

We await their lordships

13 January 2011 19:02

The May 5th date for the AV referendum is under threat because the bill paving the way for it might not get through the House of Lords in time. The… Continue reading


An 80 percent elected Lords would not be a Lib Dem triumph

30 December 2010 17:23

The Lib Dem manifesto committed the party to a fully elected House of Lords. The Tory manifesto talked about a ‘mainly-elected’ second chamber and in 2007 David Cameron voted for… Continue reading


Miliband’s New Generation draws the line under donor peers

20 November 2010 10:57

Patronage remains a strong statement of leadership, and an indication of a leader’s competence. As James noted yesterday, Ed Miliband chose the occasion to play one of his few picture… Continue reading


What the new peerages tell us about the party leaders

19 November 2010 13:00

Today’s peerage list contains more interesting names than usual. Jullian Fellowes — Downton Abbey, Gosford Park, Snobs — is the one who will get the most attention. It is a… Continue reading


Full list of peerages

19 November 2010 11:49

Number 10 has published the full list of new peerages. There are 27 new Conservative peers, including Sir Patrick Cormack, Richard Spring, Julian Fellowes, Howard Flight, Michael Grade and Patience… Continue reading


To A Foulkes

29 August 2010 13:58

George – now Lord – Foulkes is taking his leave of Holyrood and returning to the comfort of the red benches in the House of Lords. It’s fair to say… Continue reading


Is the United States Senate Broken?

10 August 2010 15:30

In one sense, yes it is. The Senate may be the world’s most exasperating deliberative body. As with it’s Roman counterpart there’s a growing sense that the Senate has outlived… Continue reading


Mandelson’s miscalculation

17 July 2010 11:26

Peter Mandelson’s decision to support Gordon Brown right to the end enabled him to cease being a purely factional figure in the Labour party. The multiple standing ovations he received… Continue reading


Arise Lord Prescott

31 May 2010 11:26

It’s John Prescott’s birthday – or Lord Prescott, as he will soon be. How odd of JP to don the ermine, given that he is on record saying that he… Continue reading


Hurd weighs in on the 55 percent debate

14 May 2010 16:30

Plenty of eyes on the Tory grandees at the moment.  I mean, the right of the party isn’t exactly delighted with the LibCon coalition – so the search is on… Continue reading


The World’s Greatest Deliberative Body

1 April 2010 15:59

Meanwhile, can there be any doubt that the House of Lords remains, despite everything, the finest legislative body in the world? The people who want to put us through yet… Continue reading


John Butterfill won’t get a peerage…

23 March 2010 9:47

…confirms David Cameron, at his monthly press conference.  If you didn’t catch last night’s Dispatches, Butterfill is the Tory MP who said, among other things, that it is “quite likely… Continue reading


Cameron Must Show a Ruthless Streak

7 March 2010 8:53

There is an excellent piece on the Ashcroft affair from Martin Ivens in the Sunday Times today. He quotes a member of Team Cameron: "Why didn’t David just take Ashcroft… Continue reading


Labour’s pursuit of Ashcroft could backfire

2 March 2010 12:18

I wrote yesterday that Lord Ashcroft’s statement about his tax status should have drawn a "rather neat line under the issue".  Sure, it’s hardly ideal that someone with such influence… Continue reading


The House of Lords at its exceptional best

7 January 2010 23:11

Archbishop George Carey has his detractors, but his article in the Times is a candid explanation of the ills that unfettered immigration is causing this country. The tone is so… Continue reading


Three Cheers for the House of Lords

12 November 2009 0:09

Everyone, and not without reason, holds the House of Commons in some degree of contempt. This has provoked any number of proposals for reforming the lower house. One simple, if… Continue reading

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Welcome reforms, but they do not provide the complete answer

29 October 2009 13:00

Baroness Royall has confirmed the Eames inquiry’s recommendation that the House of Lords has its own standards watchdog, following allegations that four Labour peers offered to amend laws for specific… Continue reading


Ironically, Cameron can only deconstruct the state by manipulating central patronage

15 October 2009 9:04

If it remains a mystery that, 12 years after describing the House of Lords as an “affront to democracy”, Labour have not attempted wholesale reform, then look no further than… Continue reading


David Cameron, his Goats & his Pocket Boroughs

15 October 2009 2:05

The other day Pete mentioned David Cameron’s desire to bring in outsiders to staff his government ministries, making it a Tory version of Gordon’s so-called Government Of All the Talents.… Continue reading


Bercow wants Lords Mandelson and Adonis to be questioned by MPs

24 September 2009 18:02

Speaker Bercow has suggested that prominent cabinet ministers who sit in the House of Lords should be brought before the backbenchers for scrutiny. The Telegraph’s James Kirkup has the details:… Continue reading


The benefit of the Lords

8 July 2009 16:31

I disagree with Helena Kennedy on a whole host of issues, but her speech last night in the Lords debate on assisted suicide was fantastic. Here’s the opening section of… Continue reading


A welcome rejection of assisted suicide

7 July 2009 22:10

I’m delighted that Lord Falconer has just failed in his attempt to legalise assisted suicide for people sending friends and relatives to Swiss death clinics. This is a topic which… Continue reading