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Federal Union: The Jury Team is wrong about Europe
As the European elections come closer, a new political movement enters the fray. Called the Jury Team, it intends to field self-styled independent candidates in each electoral constituency in the country. Presumably there is also the attraction that proportional representation offers to smaller parties, what with the Greens and UKIP having won seats in Brussels when they might never have done the same in Westminster.

The mission of the Jury Team (its mastermind is Sir Paul Judge, which I imagine is where the name comes from) is to increase the amount of independence in British politics. Political parties, it says, have become career machines: instead, it sees politics as a service rather than a vocation. The things it objects to include whipping votes in the House of Commons, and MPs serving more than three terms.

While it is true that the legislature has become less powerful compared with the executive in recent times, that is not the fault of the party system. The problem is much more profound than that. The whole so-called unwritten constitution needs to be redesigned, building in protection for parliament against the encroachments of the government. The potential weakness of parliament has always been there; what has changed is that government is willing to exploit it. Only a written constitution can provide the guarantees needed.
by Fran on Fri Mar 20th, 2009 at 03:16:50 PM EST
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