The likelihood of elected peers voting for Lords reform would be like ‘turkeys voting for Christmas’, Mike Amesbury told a debate in Parliament.
Weaver Vale MP Mr Amesbury believes the House of Lords should be abolished and replaced with a fully-elected second chamber.
Addressing the Lord’s Speakers Committee during a debate on the issue, the Labour politician said: “Would it be progress, and a sign of a mature democracy that would engage people more in the democratic process, if we had a fully elected second Chamber and abolished the House of Lords?”
Conservative Chris Skidmore, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for the Cabinet Office, later said that the Government was ‘committed to seeing a reduction’ in the House of Lords, adding: “The Government welcome the publication of the report and are looking forward to the peers debating it.”
But Mr Amesbury replied: “On consensus, surely the 92 hereditary turkeys would not vote for Christmas. They would not drive reform, but surely, as the sovereign, democratically elected Chamber, we should?”
Speaking later outside the Chamber, Mr Amesbury added: “The Lords is an ancient institution but we need a modern Chamber for a modern world.
“For too long a failure to agree on what should replace the Lords has meant the status quo has remained.
“I’d like to now hear solutions from all sides of the House so we can secure cross-party reform and deliver something better than we have now.”
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