B1519 – Recall of MPs (Amendment) Bill 2019. Watch

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Andrew97
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Recall of MPs Act 2015 (Amendment) Bill 2019 - TSR Conservative and Unionist Party






A bill to allow for MP recall petitions in the event of a partisan defection or change of party affiliation.



BE IT ENACTED by The Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Commons in this present Parliament assembled, in accordance with the provisions of the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1. Amendments

(1) Under section 1 of the Recall of MPs Act 2015, amend the following
(i): Under subsection 1(a); change “1)An MP becomes subject to a recall petition process if—(a) the first, second or third recall condition has been met in relation to the MP”

to

“1)An MP becomes subject to a recall petition process if—(a) the first, second, third or fourth recall condition has been met in relation to the MP.”

(2): Add the following subsection 10 between the existing subsections 9 and 10, with the existing subsections 10 and 11 being renamed subsections 11 and 12 respectively:
(i) “(10) The fourth recall condition is that —(a) The MP has joined a political party for whom they did not originally stand for in the previous general election or by-election where the member was elected.(b) The MP no longer holds the whip of the political party for which they were elected in the previous general election or by-election in the House of Commons.”

2 - Commencement, extent and short title
(1) This Act comes into force on the day after the date of Royal assent.
(2) This Act extends to the whole of the United Kingdom.
(3) This Act may be cited as the Recall of MPs Act 2015 (Amendment) Bill 2019.


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This bill seeks to deal with the issue of MP defections and deselection by their political party by expanding the recall petition process and allowing an MP’s constituents to trigger a By-Election in the event of a defection or deselection should they wish to do so.

The relevant section of the legislation being amended can be found here: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/...tion/1/enacted”

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The Mogg
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Aye, after the recent issue of Sam Gyimah defecting to the Liberal Undemocratic Democrats, and only 10% (or something like that) of his constituency voting Lib Dem, the constituents should be well within their rights to hold him and other defecting MP's to account in a by-election if they wish to do so.
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04MR17
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Mr Speaker, can it be made clear that this will not affect proceedings in MHoC?
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Connor27
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A massive aye from me.
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Andrew97
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(Original post by 04MR17)
Mr Speaker, can it be made clear that this will not affect proceedings in MHoC?
I refer you to thr GD. Section 2.9 which states that an MP defecting parties does not take their seat with them.
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barnetlad
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If this applies to real-life then there should be about 270 by-elections, as there are c270 elected under the Conservative Party banner who are not Conservative any more in other than name. Regardless of its legality which the Supreme Court will rule on next week, no Conservative would by-pass Parliament as Mr Johnson has done, nor engage in purges as happened with the 21 MPs expelled from the party. Mrs Thatcher would not have done this, nor would Stanley Baldwin, Winston Churchill, Benjamin Disraeli or the effective founder of the Conservative Party, Robert Peel.
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Connor27
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(Original post by barnetlad)
If this applies to real-life then there should be about 270 by-elections, as there are c270 elected under the Conservative Party banner who are not Conservative any more in other than name. Regardless of its legality which the Supreme Court will rule on next week, no Conservative would by-pass Parliament as Mr Johnson has done, nor engage in purges as happened with the 21 MPs expelled from the party. Mrs Thatcher would not have done this, nor would Stanley Baldwin, Winston Churchill, Benjamin Disraeli or the effective founder of the Conservative Party, Robert Peel.
It is indeed real life as BILLS apply to real life whereas AMENDMENTS apply to MHoC electoral processes.

With regards to your retort, I must point out that this would not trigger an automatic by election but merely would allow for a recall petition for the MP in question which would require 10% of constituents to sign for a By Election to occur as the existing legislation stipulates.
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Rakas21
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Mr Speaker, this bill has my full support.

(Original post by 04MR17)
Mr Speaker, can it be made clear that this will not affect proceedings in MHoC?
We can state that in the Notes.
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04MR17
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(Original post by Rakas21)
We can state that in the Notes.
Thank you.
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04MR17
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On behalf of the authors of this bill I thank the speaker for conducting a debate on this issue. I also note that despite the extremely small pool of voters the public holds no consensus on this issue: with poll results at 50% for either side.

As for the bill itself, I'm against. I would rather see MPs prohibited from defecting parties, encouraging them to go independent instead. Since the bill does nothing to engender those who leave their party to engage in a by election, and only for those who join a different party I must oppose this.

Mr Speaker, constituents are welcome to hold their MPs to account for the beliefs they hold, the policies on which they made promises during elections and on any changes to those policies. However, this bill only indicates for a change in political positions based on party membership; I would argue that there are some even more dramatic shifts in political opinion that MPs hold from within a party (e.g. from a campaigning remainer to committed leave minister, overnight) and significant political shifts that can occur from an MP becoming independent after leaving a party, and even significant political shifts from an independent MP when elected who has a complete rethink of their policies and instead begins to argue for the opposite policies. To my knowledge and to the extent of the bill's explanation, none of these changes under current law and under this bill would lead MPs listed in the scenarios above to enter a by election.

If the justification for this bill is that a defection means a change in political position and no mandate for such position for those constituents then the bill should also legislate to cover for examples where this may be more prevalent.

Without these I feel I must oppose.
Last edited by 04MR17; 3 weeks ago
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04MR17
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Also, the link in the notes is broken
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Aph
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Is ‘holding the whip of a party’ defined in law? If not you need to do that.
How would the affect members elected as independents who go on to join a party?
How would this affect parties who decide to merge in the middle of a parliamentary term?
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Connor27
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(Original post by Aph)
Is ‘holding the whip of a party’ defined in law? If not you need to do that.
How would the affect members elected as independents who go on to join a party?
How would this affect parties who decide to merge in the middle of a parliamentary term?
Thank you for raising these points and they will be considered for a second reading.
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Saracen's Fez
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No, it's quite possible that major political realignment may take place during a parliamentary term (as we are currently seeing) and this shouldn't result in a large number of by-elections.

I think we're being a bit generous to Douglas Carswell and Mark Reckless, as it's not traditional for a defecting MP to hold a by-election. What I imagine is that those were the first defections that most people here can remember, but that doesn't make them typical.
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CatusStarbright
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I am inclined to support but I would need to see the changes for the Second Reading before commenting properly as I agree that the points Aph raised need to be addressed.
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Aph
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I’d like to discuss this bill now.

This bill is a constitutional outrage and should not be allowed to pass through this house. The formation of government and parliament is simple. The people vote for a delegate to represent them and the person that all the elected delegates have confidence in then becomes Prime Minister.

What this bill says is that people are not voting for delegates but are voting for parties and by extension for political leaders. This bill as I see it is admitting the de facto position that people vote for who they want to form the executive and not who they want to represent them in the legislature. Our system, whilst not perfect, works because people vote for the person and not the party.

If the conservatives believe that the populous vote for the party and not the person then they should introduce PR and force a new general election whenever the PM changes or directly elect the PM. If, however, the conservatives believe that people vote for a delegate to represent their best interests in parliament then the person switching party doesn’t matter because it was the person and not the party that voters chose.

This bill tries to further conflate FPTP with proportional representation, it tries to make a monstrous chimera of a system without addressing the constitutional irregularities this bill produces.

I say to the conservatives and to the house that if this bill passes it must only do so if the house accepts proportional representation, a separation of executive from legislature or as a bill that gives constituants an unqualified right to recall members of parliament. Anything else is a threat to our constitution and must not be allowed to pass.
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04MR17
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PRSOM ^
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Connor27
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(Original post by Aph)
I’d like to discuss this bill now.

This bill is a constitutional outrage and should not be allowed to pass through this house. The formation of government and parliament is simple. The people vote for a delegate to represent them and the person that all the elected delegates have confidence in then becomes Prime Minister.

What this bill says is that people are not voting for delegates but are voting for parties and by extension for political leaders. This bill as I see it is admitting the de facto position that people vote for who they want to form the executive and not who they want to represent them in the legislature. Our system, whilst not perfect, works because people vote for the person and not the party.

If the conservatives believe that the populous vote for the party and not the person then they should introduce PR and force a new general election whenever the PM changes or directly elect the PM. If, however, the conservatives believe that people vote for a delegate to represent their best interests in parliament then the person switching party doesn’t matter because it was the person and not the party that voters chose.

This bill tries to further conflate FPTP with proportional representation, it tries to make a monstrous chimera of a system without addressing the constitutional irregularities this bill produces.

I say to the conservatives and to the house that if this bill passes it must only do so if the house accepts proportional representation, a separation of executive from legislature or as a bill that gives constituants an unqualified right to recall members of parliament. Anything else is a threat to our constitution and must not be allowed to pass.
But the Recall of MPs Act already exists? It’s not some new novel constitutional idea, this bill just builds on the existing legislation by giving another recall condition.
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Aph
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(Original post by Connor27)
But the Recall of MPs Act already exists? It’s not some new novel constitutional idea, this bill just builds on the existing legislation by giving another recall condition.
The nature of the condition is what destroys the constitution not the nature of the concept of recall.
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Connor27
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(Original post by Aph)
The nature of the condition is what destroys the constitution not the nature of the concept of recall.
Ok then... in that case the onus is on you to illustrate why the existing three recall conditions are acceptable and this one is not - if you cannot make such a case I hope you are consistent and submit a repeal bill for the Recall Act soon!
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