Thursday, October 04, 2007

Fixed Terms?

Ken may not like voting in the dark - although seems happy to govern there - but Lib Dem president Simon Hughes has raised the inevitable question of whether or not we should have fixed term parliaments. Much of the current speculation is because of the prime minister's constitutional power to request an election whenever he or she wants - a power usually abused by PM's to ensure they hold elections when the polls are most favourable. Fixed terms sound a good idea, but do they really fit with our notion of parliamentary government? And, as George Osborne pointed out on Newsnight tonight, what happens when you have an inconclusive result? A fixed term then would mean five years of minority government.

2 comments:

Norfolk Blogger said...

Fixed terms could mean a minority government, but if a government falls apart and no government is able to be formed, the head of state can call an early election. This is how it works in the rest of the world.

GM said...

True..the only issue remaining, I guess, being the right of a hereditary head of state to take that decision. But that, after all, is nothing new, so not really an obstacle?