Monday, April 01, 2024

A House of Citizens?

I don't know whether the Metro letter page is preserved for posterity or not, but there are some interesting comments on the House of Lords in today's letters. This seems to follow on from recent discussion, which includes one call to abolish the HoL entirely. This follows the recent news that at least one peer also wants to abolish the HoL.

I'm not clear whether some replacement is envisioned or whether James Bradshaw from London would prefer a unicameral parliament. However, David Jubb from Devon offers an interesting alternative in today's letters:

"I’d rather have a House of Citizens than a House of Lords, with people from all walks of life contributing, as we do with jury service.

It would bring common sense to Westminster from every part of the UK and could be based on the model of successful citizens’ assemblies."

This idea isn't new (as he perhaps knows, given the reference to citizens' assemblies). Random selection, along the lines of jury service, is generally known as sortition. It has been proposed before, as a way to replace the House of Lords (Amazon affiliate link) or, indeed, even to replace elected representatives (Amazon affiliate link).

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