A more representative chamber: representation and the House of Lords

Bochel, Hugh and Defty, Andrew (2012) A more representative chamber: representation and the House of Lords. Journal of Legislative Studies, 18 (1). pp. 82-97. ISSN 1357-2334

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13572334.2012.646714

Abstract

Since 1997 there has been substantive reform of the House of Lords in an effort to make the chamber ‘more democratic and more representative’. Whilst the Labour government failed to press ahead with any of the proposed plans for further reform following the removal of the bulk of the hereditary peers in 1999, it remained committed to the notion that such reform must make the second chamber ‘more representative’. The coalition government's programme advocates a long-term aspiration for a House wholly or mainly elected on the basis of proportional representation, and a short-term approach based on additional appointments to ensure a balance of the parties. What is clear in all of these proposals for reform is a desire for the House of Lords to become more representative than it is at present. However, what is less clear is what is meant by ‘representative’ – who the House of Lords is supposed to represent, and what form representation will take. Moreover, in proposing to make the chamber more representative, either through appointment or election, little attention has been paid to how the current House of Lords provides representation. This article examines these questions in the context of Pitkin's classic conceptions of representation and peers' attitudes towards their own representative role

Item Type:Article
Keywords:House of Lords, Representation, Parliament
Subjects:L Social studies > L230 UK Government/Parliamentary Studies
L Social studies > L200 Politics
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Social & Political Sciences
ID Code:4959
Deposited By: Hugh Bochel
Deposited On:21 Mar 2012 12:31
Last Modified:04 Dec 2013 21:26

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