Lords is a Working Legislature, Not a Retirement Home

This week there has been a coordinated attempt to drive the outrage bus over Boris’s resignation list, it hasn’t really got going – probably because the list is a lot shorter than most suspected (so much for the so called ‘lavender list’ warnings that Boris would try to appoint 50 peers) and the fact the MPs on it are deferring any by-elections. Which is a peace-making gesture to Rishi that he would be unwise to spurn…

This morning’s Telegraph picks on Charlotte Owen, whose crime appears to be that she is a young woman in politics, reporting disapprovingly that she is 27 years of age, she is actually 29. The Times complained yesterday that Ross Kempsell was in his twenties, he is 30. If you are going to thunder about someone’s age, best get it right.

There are many issues with the Lords and how appointments are made that need reforming, appointing younger peers is surely not one of them. The average age in the upper chamber is 71, 13 members are aged 90 or over. The highest concentration of members from all parties is in the 70–79 age band, except the bishops, whose members mostly fall into the spritely 60 – 69 age band. The house is regularly referred to as a retirement home, which it should not be, considering it is a working legislature. Injecting some youth might be energising…

There are recent precedents for young advisers in their thirties being appointed by departing PMs; Cameron made Nat Wei a Lord at 33 and his press secretary Gabby Bertin was 38 when she became a Baroness, Jo Jo Penn was 34 when Theresa May put her in ermine. Let’s also not forget that the previous youngest person ever to receive a life peerage at 32 years of age, Lord Redesdale, was proposed by the LibDems in 2000….

mdi-timer 11 November 2022 @ 17:37 11 Nov 2022 @ 17:37 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments