The Constitution Committee took evidence from Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg MP and Chloe Smith MP, Minister for Political and Constitutional Reform, on Wednesday 9 January 2012.
The Committee held an annual session with Nick Clegg to scrutinise progress on the coalition’s programme of political and constitutional reform. The Committee covered a number of areas with the Ministers, including the coalition’s political and constitutional reform priorities for the remainder of the Parliament now that Lords reform has been abandoned.
Other issues the Committee discussed with Mr Clegg and Ms Smith included:
- The appropriateness of significant constitutional reforms such as the House of Commons boundary review being the subject of bargaining between coalition partners.
- Why Mr Clegg does not support Lord Steel of Aikwood’s private members bill, which would make limited changes to the House of Lords.
- Whether the Government can offer assurances that they do not intend to introduce a significant number new Peers, given the current size of the House of Lords?
- Whether the decision to allow 16 year olds to vote in the referendum on Scottish independence will have an impact on elections in the UK?
- Why the Government decided to fast track through Parliament the Succession to the Crown Bill, given that its provisions are intended to apply retrospectively.
The evidence session took place at 10.30am on Wednesday 9 January 2013 in Committee Room 1 in the House of Lords.