Critics said the house - which has around 800 members, dwarfing the House of Commons' 650 MPs - has become bloated and expensive. Daily allowances
Critics said the house – which has around 800 members, dwarfing the House of Commons’ 650 MPs – has become bloated and expensive. Daily allowances for members are a staggering £323 per day – although this has been halved due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
And now a new report has revealed the house is disproportionately filled with members from London, the south-east and east of England.
Willie Sullivan, Senior Director at the Electoral Reform Society, said the House of Lords was at the heart of “constitutional crisis at Westminster”.
He added: “Voters deserve so much better than a publicly-funded private member’s club packed to the hilt with party donors and allies.
“The Lords totally failing to reflect the diversity of knowledge and experience in this country, and the time is now for root-and-branch change.
“These new figures shine a light on the pressing need for reform.
“Westminster looks desperately outdated and warped, and the unelected second chamber plays a big role in this.”
Mr Sullivan stressed the Prime Minister must “heed these calls for change.”
He added: “A majority of voters across parties want to see a proportionally-elected second chamber which could truly help level up the whole UK.
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“It’s time to put the brakes on this gravy train and abolish the House of Lords.”
The Electoral Commission’s new report also revealed more than half of the 800 Peers live in the South East, East of England or London
The investigation found 56 percent or 216 peers were based there, raising concerns the chamber failed to fairly represent the devolved nations or UK regions.
The figures further revealed just 8 percent of Lords were from Scotland, with Scottish Tory MSP Ruth Davidson the most recent appointee.
The report further reveals 3.1 percent live in the West Midlands and 4.5 percent in the North West.
In terms of gender, 72 percent of Lords are male and 54 percent of Lords are aged over 70, whilst only a 37.9 percent of Lords have a background in politics.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson appointed 52 new peers in 2020, a move which raised the concern of Lord Speaker Norman Fowler.
2020 appointees include Brexiteer former MEP Daniel Hannan, and Chair of Keir Starmer’s leadership campaign Jennifer Chapman.
A House of Lords spokesman said the House of Lords was a “highly effective and busy Chamber, performing a vital role of improving legislation and holding the Government to account.”