DCSIMG

Boundary Commission - we’ve seen it all before

Dennis Miller is right when he says that “I know a lot more than he does about the workings of the Boundary Commission.” Sadly, his letter is all downhill from that point.

For a start it is only media speculation that the boundary proposals would give David Cameron a 20-seat majority. Anybody who predicts the outcome of an election campaign is a fool! There are 42 million voters out there with minds of their own, and very distinct ideas about how to cast their votes, and they know how to use them. He strangely assumes that any changes to voter registration would affect the less well-off and Labour voters. A telling verdict on the expected supporters of a major political party. I wonder why? Another Cameron plot?

He says the House of Lords has been augmented with “hundreds of new peers by this government.” What a load old rubbish!

I doubt there has been many more than 100 new peers in the past 15 years, back to Blair’s time, and they were all nominated by their respective political parties. The idea that Lord John Prescott might be a Tory nominated Life Peer is laughable, in fact bordering on the insulting, to one of the more endearing characters of Parliament for the past 50 years.

There isn’t a Tory majority in the House of Lords. There ain’t a Labour one either. It’s all down to that bunch in the middle known as the Crossbenchers, who, from time to time, tell the government of the day to think again. No more, no less. No power, but a very powerful tool as far as the electorate is concerned.

The Boundary Commission have very distinct terms of reference, the basic ones being laid down by Parliament. That’s the last time the politicians have a say on the boundaries, until the Commissions proposals are published. And then it’s every political party for itself in the public enquiries.

Constituency boundaries are not proposed in line with previous election results. What good would that do to anybody when the voters can freely change their minds next time around. And do! It’s called democracy.

Parliamentary boundary proposals are expected to be easily recognisable by the voters, and follow established geographical lines where possible. As for the Spenborough proposals, there is nothing in them that hasn’t been done before in these valleys at previous boundary revisions. Don’t take my word for it, it’s all there on the record. Try Google, or better still look at the Spenborough Guardian archives.

As for a “radical reduction in the number of MPs,” isn’t 50 radical enough? Seems to me you could be on the same side as Cameron on that one. He wants smaller government, fewer politicians interfering with what the voters want. But not for a one per cent pay rise. I don’t see an extra 650 quid attracting lots more candidates for the job, do you?

And don’t get yourself hooked on believing Nick Clegg is an authority to follow. In a hissy-fit, he’s only doing what Lib-Dems have always done, playing for their own political advantage. But, with his latest fiasco over the education of his children, I reckon the penny has finally dropped about Nick Clegg.

His, and Milliband’s, mansion tax? Come on, does anybody think the £2 million threshold will stick? When they find out it won’t raise as much money as they expected, and it won’t, down it will come to £1 million, even £500,000. Lot of houses in that bracket in these valleys! Based on past events that should take about three Labour/Lib-Dem budgets. And, with the present boundaries, Clegg has made it that bit easier for Labour, and will expect his due reward, a Labour/Lib-Dem Coalition. Just remember, you read it first in the Spenborough Guardian.

ALAN CARCAS

Cornmill Lane

LIVERSEDGE

 

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