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The House of Lords 1911-2011: A Century of Non-Reform (eBook)

ISBN13: 9781782250494
Published: October 2012
Publisher: Hart Publishing
Country of Publication: UK
Format: eBook (ePub)
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House of Lords reform is often characterised as unfinished business: a riddle that has been left unanswered since 1911.  But rarely can an unanswered riddle have had so many answers offered, even though few have been accepted; indeed, when Viscount Cave was invited in the mid-1920s to lead a Cabinet committee on Lords reform, he complained of finding “the ground covered by an embarrassing mass of proposals”.  That embarrassing mass continued throughout the twentieth century.  Much ink has been spilled on what should be done with the upper House of Parliament; but much less ink has been expended on why reform has been so difficult to achieve.

This book analyses in detail the principal attempts to reform the House of Lords. Starting with the Parliament Act of 1911 the book examines the century of non-reform that followed, in the process drawing upon substantial archival sources, many of which have been under-utilised until now.  These sources challenge many of the existing understandings of the history of House of Lords reform and the reasons for success or failure of reform attempts, starting by arguing against the popular idea that the 1911 Act was intended by its supporters to be a temporary measure.

Constitutional and Administrative Law, Legal History, eBooks
Introduction: Reform and Non-reform
Reform and Non-reform
A Century of Non-reform
The Evolution of the House of Lords
Twelve Instances of Reform and Non-reform
1. Veto Limitation over Reform: The Parliament Act 1911
The Political Situation, 1906–07
Cabinet Discussions on Lords Reform, 1907
Budget Rejection, 1909
Between the 1910 Elections
The Parliament Bill 1911
Reform following Veto Limitation? 1911–14
2. 'The Battle is Over': House of Lords Reform, 1917–45
The Bryce Conference, 1917–18
Cabinet Committees, 1921–22
The Cabinet Committee, 1925–27
Lords reform in the 1920s
Avoiding Reform, 1928–45
3. A Pre-emptive Strike: The Parliament Act 1949
Labour and the House of Lords
Moves Towards reform, 1943–47
Nationalisation and House of Lords Reform
The Parliament Bill 1947
The Party Leaders' Conference 1948
The Parliament Bill Resumed
The Iron and Steel Bill
4. Diluting the Hereditary Principle?: The Life Peerages Act 1958
Life Peers
Inter-Party Discussions
Discussions, 1953–55
Limiting the Hereditaries: Proposals
Wider Reform: The Cabinet Committee, 1955–56
Short and Long Bills
The Life Peerages Bill
Limiting the Hereditary Peers
5. 'The Wedgwood Benn Enabling Bill': The Peerage Act 1963
A Hereditary Life Peerage
Earlier Attempts at Renouncing Peerages
The Persistent Commoner
Fears over Loss of the Hereditary System
Party Support for Benn
The Committee of Privileges
Seating the 'Defeated' Candidate
The Joint Select Committee
The Peerage Bill
6. Adding to Wilson's Strife: The Inter-Party Conference and the Parliament (No 2) Bill [1968–69]
Abandoning the Unilateral, Two-Stage Approach
The Inter-Party Conference
The Southern Rhodesia (United Nations Sanctions) Order 1968
The White Paper and the Decision to Proceed with the Bill
The Parliament (No 2) Bill
Abandoning the Bill
Epilogue: House of Lords Reform, 1970–74
After 1974
7. Stage One of Two?: The House of Lords Act 1999
Turning the Tide of Constitutional Reform
John Smith's Leadership
Tony Blair and House of Lords Reform
Post-election 1997
Priorities for the First Session
The Cabinet Committee
The Queen's Speech 1998
The Weatherill Amendment: Origins
The House of Lords Bill
By-elections for Hereditary Peers
8. The Long Stage Two: The Wakeham Commission and Beyond
The Royal Commission on the Reform of the House of Lords
Follow-up to the Royals Commissions's Report
2001–05: Indecision, then a Surprising Move on Reform
Lords Reform in Labour's Third Term
2010: General Election and Coalition Government
9. Reasons for Reform and Non-reform
How and Why Does House of Lords Reform Reach the Cabinet's Agenda?
How Do Proposals Change When Under Consideration?
How and Why Do Proposals Succeed or Fail?

Series: Hart Studies in Constitutional Law

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Stretching the Constitution: The Brexit Shock in Historic Perspective ISBN 9781509905805
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The Codes of the Constitution ISBN 9781509926817
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Parliaments and Human Rights ISBN 9781849461382
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Parliament and the Law 2nd ed ISBN 9781509908714
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Parliament and the Law 2nd ed (eBook) ISBN 9781509908721
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Essays on the History of Parliamentary Procedure: In Honour of Thomas Erskine May (eBook)
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Essays on the History of Parliamentary Procedure: In Honour of Thomas Erskine May
Edited by: Paul Evans
ISBN 9781509900206
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The Codes of the Constitution (eBook) ISBN 9781509904105
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£26.98 + £5.40 VAT
The Codes of the Constitution ISBN 9781849466813
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Parliament: Legislation and Accountability ISBN 9781849467162
Published April 2016
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Parliament: Legislation and Accountability (eBook) ISBN 9781509906444
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£25.18 + £5.04 VAT
Law in Politics, Politics in Law
Edited by: David Feldman
ISBN 9781849469906
Published November 2015
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£25.18 + £5.04 VAT
The House of Lords 1911-2011: A Century of Non-Reform ISBN 9781849466608
Published August 2014
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Law in Politics, Politics in Law (eBook)
Edited by: David Feldman
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Law in Politics, Politics in Law
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The House of Lords 1911-2011: A Century of Non-Reform ISBN 9781849462891
Published October 2012
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