submitted 1 month ago by kescusay to c/askpolitics

Both are legislative bodies, so I'm curious about how they structurally differ.

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[-] Lemming421 1 points 1 month ago

The Commons are a publicly elected body and the seats from it are used to calculate which party/coalition has enough of a majority to form the government.

The Lords are either appointed or hereditary. They can be members of the government (Lord Cameron is the Foreign Secretary, for example), but their seats don’t count towards party numbers.

[-] kescusay 1 points 1 month ago

How are votes for legislation counted? Do they get to put their fingers on the scales?

[-] Lemming421 2 points 1 month ago

I’m not 100% sure, actually. I know the Lords are still politically aligned, but while I assume that bills have to go through both houses, I’m not sure how that works in practice.

They don’t teach politics in primary or high school and I didn’t study it at university. The news mostly covers the Commons - it’s rare to hear about the Lords blocking a bill, but not unheard of.

[-] doublejay1999 1 points 1 month ago

The Lords are not elected , for starters. They are hereditary peers (aristocracy whose ancestors did favours for William the Conqueror). Or political appointments.

Funny huh ?

[-] kescusay 2 points 1 month ago

I'd heard something like that, but I didn't know it was actually hereditary! That's ridiculous. Is there a good reason to maintain such a system?

[-] doublejay1999 2 points 1 month ago

I guess it’s a very effective subversion of representative democracy. !

[-] Lemming421 1 points 1 month ago* (last edited 1 month ago)

We look at the American system where both houses are elected and how that has just turned politics into even more of a popularity contest.

On the one hand, the entire concept of a hereditary aristocracy is anti-democratic.

On the other, I think the theory is a hereditary position is supposed to be able to think further ahead and be less influenced by populism.

this post was submitted on 25 Mar 2024
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