House of Lords: Life Peerages — Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:45 pm on 15th March 2011.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Lord Grocott Lord Grocott Labour 2:45 pm, 15th March 2011

My Lords, that is a very, very welcome Answer. I am almost at a loss for words. I am so much at a loss that I want to have it rephrased. Is the noble Lord actually saying that everyone currently a life Peer will remain a Peer for life? If he is saying that, I suggest to him that he is getting himself out of an awful lot of difficulty, but if he is not saying that-he is looking very quizzical now, so perhaps I was not getting a straight answer to a straight question. Let me simply put it to him that it would be a bit cynical if the same Government who have created 119 new life Peers since the general election, all of whom are making a terrific contribution to the work of this House, are at the same time, according to his interview with the Financial Times at any rate, planning to remove us and replace us with senators by 2015. I suggest to him that given that, so far, there has been no agreement whatever on the powers and functions of any reformed second Chamber, the simple thing for him to do-I imagine it would be a relief to the Government-would be to pick up the splendid House of Lords Reform Bill in the name of the noble Lord, Lord Steel of Aikwood, and take it forward as government policy.