REVIEW | On the House of Lords & A Possible Alternative (POI Podcasts #2)
This second installation of POI podcasts saw us turn our attention to the issues surrounding the House of Lords, and a possible alternative to this upper chamber. Stemming from the article written by Max Anderson of the Liberal team, he was joined in debate by Evan Saunders of Labour, and Fletcher Kipps of the Conservatives.
Firstly, we discussed the main issues of the House of Lords: their un-elected nature, their stipend, the value of their advisory role, and the fact that we are the only other country outside of Iran that have seats set aside for religious leaders.
Naturally, we also spent some time on an alternative: a proportionally representative body of under 35s, elected by under 35s. As with most things, this presented some key strengths and some teething problems, prompting good questions. Should we break from our London-centric tradition, and have this house in the North? How much authority should this new house have? Would this house be dominated by a political party? And if so, what would be the ramifications?
At the crux of the debate was the disaffection of the youth vote in this country. Many young adults in the UK feel as though they go unheard. The resolution of this issue is at the heart of Max’s article, and this week’s discussion. Should proportional representation be the route we take?
As the host, I very much enjoyed this debate. All parties were very well informed and participated in a productive discussion that directly tackled big questions. Each differing point of view throwing new light on the topic at hand. We even had a touch of Labour-Conservative agreement!
Written by host, Alexander Dennis
Hello, I’m Alexander Dennis, and I am going into my third undergraduate year at the University of Exeter. I study Politics & International Relations, with a possible year abroad hanging in the balance. My particular interest in politics really started in early 2016: yes, it was ‘Brexit’. I was at once intrigued, and confused, by something so critical. From that baptism, I have become somewhat addicted to political discussion, intrigued by issues ranging from drugs policy to taxation. So I followed my nose: I applied for a degree in the subject.