Jeremy Corbyn calls for Labour 2020 pledge to scrap appointed House of Lords

Posted On: 
15th January 2017

Jeremy Corbyn has signalled that Labour will go into the 2020 election calling for the House of Lords to be abolished and replaced with an elected second chamber.

Peers in the House of Lords
Credit: 
PA Images

The Labour leader, a long-term proponent of Lords reform, said the upper chamber is dominated by “a small number of people from London and the south east” and should be more representative.

Mr Corbyn said the party would debate the issue before reaching a fixed position, but stressed that he would like for the proposal to feature in Labour’s 2020 manifesto.

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Explaining why he thought the political system is “rigged”, he told the Andrew Marr show: “We have a House of Lords which is dominated by a small number of people from London and the south east.

“I would want to see an elected second chamber that it is representative of all regions and nations of the United Kingdom. I think that’s very, very important. I think it should have an electoral mandate to go with it.”

He added: “It is not a new concept, it’s been in debate for a very long time. I would like us to get to that position by 2020.”

Mr Corbyn floated the idea of scrapping the House of Lords in August while campaigning during last year’s Labour leadership contest against Owen Smith.

Expanding on his ideas this morning, the Labour leader called for greater political representation in the north of England and said he would set up a constitutional convention before the next election.

Labour in 2015 pledged to replace the Upper Chamber with “an elected Senate of the Nations and Regions, to represent every part of the United Kingdom, and improve the democratic legitimacy of the second chamber.”

Chuka Umunna, who was the party’s business spokesperson heading into the last election, tweeted:

 

 

Labour peers have forced a number of government climbdowns this parliament, including George Osborne’s decision to scrap planned cuts to working tax credits.