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The Speaker Resigns.The Beginning, Not the End of Parliamentary Reform

Michael Martin fought tooth and nail to prevent the exposition of this Parliament as monumentally, systemically and institutionally corrupt and therefore his resignation should be welcomed.
But Martin should not serve as the sole lightening conductor for what has been going on in our name.
Hundreds of "Honourable Members" have decided, activley, to rob the taxpayer of hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Nick Brown, Labour Chief Whip, has claimed a whopping £18,000 for food, and not even bothered to submit receipts so arrogant is he of his "right" to this money.
Diana Johnson, MP for Hull North a place she visited for the first time when she came up for selection, claimed £1,000 in fees for a design for her house, and her expenses overall are a total disgrace.
In total, she claimed £166,509 in travel expenses and allowances between April 2007 and March 2008 – 2.4 per cent more than the previous year when she submitted returns worth £162,584.
Alan Johnson, her neighbouring MP and senior Cabinet Minister claimed £11,000 the vast majority of which went on rail travel.
Where to now?
1) All Labour MP’s to face mandatory re selection.
2) This Parliament to be dissolved and an immediate General Election called.
3) The next Parliament to pass a Reform Bill to include fixed term Parliaments elected by the De Honte PR system, and a fully elected Upper House.
4) All MP’s should be subject to recall.
5) Labour Party candidates to be selected by a US style Primary System.
Our current system just doesn’t work and we face the biggest crisis in our political system since 1688.
Martin failed to grasp the gravity of where we are at in our busted democracy and he had to go.

About dermotrathbone

Writer and co author "Through Red Lenses". Activist Unite the Union, Save Our NHS Hull. Fan of Yorkshire County Cricket Club, Hull FC, Munster and Ireland Rugby. Views are mine alone and may not reflect the organisations concerned.


3 thoughts on “The Speaker Resigns.The Beginning, Not the End of Parliamentary Reform

  1. I like a lot of what you’re suggesting above mate. One little quibble – De Honte looks a very fair system for reflecting the balance of the vote, but it uses party lists. Gaaah. At a time where we need to be encouraging MPs to be more sensitive to the needs of their constituents, party lists just don’t feel right. Party lists are what gave us Diana Johnson.I’m fine with this as a way of selecting an elected upper house that scrutinises new legislation from the Commons, but an MP needs to have some sort of mandate from the local voters in order to have genuine credibility.How about this? De Honte for an upper chamber, Single Transferable Vote for the Commons, in new multi-member constituencies. Form these larger constituencies by merging 4 or 5 existing ones, but keep the same number of MPs for each. It might have some interesting results in how the co-MPs cooperate or compete with each other, particularly if the new constituencies have a proper mix of urban, suburban and rural voters. We need to get away from the town / country divide, and competing MPs would be more interested in the needs of their voters than in climbing the greasy pole in Westminster.For example, merge the votes from the 5 local constituencies:Hull East Hull NorthHull West & HessleHaltemprice & HowdenBeverley & HoldernessYou’d actually have a vote that counted, as would Labour voters in Withernsea, say, or the toffs in Newland Park. You would also have more chance of an MP who would fight your corner for you.I’m probably talking out of the back of my head here, in which case please correct me. I know that STP is used in Ireland, and De Honte in Ulster. How have they worked out? Can they be compared with the situation in GB?

    Posted by Andy | May 24, 2009, 10:19 pm
  2. Ex Speaker of the House – A man whose respect is now beyond redemption. Gets the push & the punishment ?£80,000 per year pension. Nice work if you can get it.

    Posted by Michael | May 25, 2009, 10:11 am
  3. Alan Johnson’s pragmatic suggestions. But would he have proposed this is we were 10 points ahead in the polls?http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article6355254.ece

    Posted by Dermot | May 25, 2009, 8:54 pm

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