Tag Archive for referendums

Debating referendums

Lord Norton

This evening, the Hansard Society organised a seminar on referendums.  There was a panel comprising Professor Vernon Bogdanor, the journalist Steve Richards, and me – standing in for Peter Riddell, the Society’s chair, who was unable to attend. It was a well attended meeting.  Vernon Bogdanor put the case for referendums, though seeing little merit in Thursday’s…

The EU Bill

Lord Norton

The Constitution Committee’s report on the European Union Bill has just been published.  To quote from the press release: “The House of Lords Constitution Committee warns that the EU Bill represents a radical step-change for the UK in adopting referendum provisions on such a large scale. This is inconsistent with the Government’s statement that referendums…

Debating the constitution

Lord Norton

The past week has been a busy one for the House in considering constitutional issues.  On Monday, there was a question for short debate (QSD) on the role of the House in the event of reform.  Such debates are time-limited – in this case to ninety minutes – and there were so many speakers that…

A perspective on referendums

Lord Norton

The Constitution Committee had its final evidence-taking session yesterday on its inquiry into referendums.  The witness was Michael Wills, the minister of state in the Department of Justice, who has responsibility for constitutional issues.  He came out with some interesting observations. When asked about the role the government should take once a referendum campaign was under…

Referendum debate

Lord Norton

I attended a debate this evening, organised by the Hansard Society, on referendums.  There were two speakers in favour of their use – former Cabinet minister and now independent MP Clare Short and Liberal Democrat MP Chris Huhne.  Speaking against were Conservative MP David Curry and Steve Richards from The Independent.  David Butler, the doyen…