What are the arguments for and against an elected second chamber

Topics: House of Lords, Parliament of the United Kingdom, Liberal Democrats Pages: 2 (706 words) Published: December 4, 2014
What are the arguments for and against an elected second chamber. Since the 1990’s there have been many demands for a reformed House of Lords from political parties such as the Liberal Democrats. It has therefore been considered by all three main political parties to incorporate elections to the appointment of Lords as a possible reform. However it could be taken from view point that an elected second chamber will decrease the representation of people because of partisanship and limit Parliaments scrutiny function. Firstly, it could be taken from view point that an elected second chamber would be far more democratic. This is because in theory the Lords would be working directly for the people and representing their views and concerns through scrutiny on the House of Commons. Furthermore being elected by the people would give the second chamber more legitimacy and enable them to provide a greater ‘check’ on the government’s legislation. In effect an elected second chamber would provide greater constraints on the House of Commons ensuring that they perform their functions and act properly on behalf of the people. These possible ‘greater constaraints’ could include delaying a bill for up to 18 months and proposing laws which the Commons should introduce. However, it is forgotten that Parliament already has an elected chamber which fails to represent the people fully. It could therefore be argued that a second elected chamber has no purpose as it would only shine Parliament in more of a negative light. Throughout the years elected members in Parliament have been involved in many scandals involving inappropriate behaviour and exploitation of the tax payer’s money. For example, in October 2012 Andrew Mitchell resigned from his post as Chief Whip following allegations made about his conduct during an altercation with police at Downing Street on 19 September, the incident becoming known as "plebgate" and the Conservative Party 'Cash for Access' scandal, March 2012. As a...
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