Committee (11th Day) (Continued)

Part of Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill – in the House of Lords at 10:30 pm on 19th January 2011.

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Photo of Lord Reid of Cardowan Lord Reid of Cardowan Labour 10:30 pm, 19th January 2011

While I am inclined to agree on the need for a definitive basis for the size of a constituency, as someone who has represented a constituency I can say that you do not represent only those who vote for you. Among the important considerations for any Member of Parliament are families, their children and their education. To ignore the population below the age of 18 when selecting the size of a constituency that MPs are to represent seems entirely at odds with what MPs do. By all means make the registrable electorate the basis of a constituency, but do not rule out, as some of my noble colleagues have said, all considerations of the population size of the constituency. At present, that element appears to be not included for-in fact, by its omission, it is specifically precluded from-the Boundary Commission's consideration.