§ Lord Moynihan
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What is their response to the comment by Lord Alexander of Weedon in the Denning Society Lecture on 30 October that "the category of life peer should be abolished or at the very least phased out, so that both elected and appointed members serve for a term, of say, 15 years". [HL1090]
§ The Lord Chancellor (Lord Irvine of Lairg)
The Government's proposals for the next stage of House of Lords reform were laid before Parliament as a Command Paper (Cm 5291) on Wednesday 7 November 2001.
In The House of Lords—Completing the Reform, the Government propose that the link between the peerage and membership of the House should be broken, with the peerage remaining as an honour. This is outlined in more detail in paragraph 78 of the command paper.
The Government have made clear their particular interest in views on the question of the term of membership for both elected and appointed members.
The Government believe that the choice for the term for appointed members is between five, 10 and 15 years.
For elected members, the choice is between five, 10 and 15 years, should elections to the House of Lords be held with those to the European Parliament, or between one, two or three Parliaments or electoral cycles, should the Lords election be linked to general elections or regional elections, respectively.
The Government are inclined to the view that the choice lies between the shorter options.