Karen Buck

Working hard for Westminster North

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My response on the recall of MP'S

Thank you for getting in touch with me about the Government's proposed legislation on the recall of MPs.

Labour supports the principle of recall, and included this in our 2010 General Election Manifesto. The Government has now committed to bring forward a Bill, and although this is late in the day, in the fifth year of Parliament, it is still welcomed.

We are now waiting for the details of their Bill, setting out how it would work in practice.

However, I would make two key points:

First, I am not in favour of a rerun of the proposals contained in Nick Clegg's draft Bill. This would have seen the recall process in the hands of Members of Parliament. There is a real risk that such a system will be seen as the political establishment closing ranks on the behaviour of a fellow politician and could lose the confidence of the public.

Second, any system of recall needs to be designed to avoid powerful vested interests kicking out MPs where no wrongdoing has happened simply because they dislike the way a politician has voted on controversial issues.
Recall could play an important role in giving people more confidence in the Parliamentary system, but we have to get the detail right. That's why we'll be closely studying the Government's plans as and when they are published.

I hope this is helpful and thank you again for writing.

Yours sincerely

Karen Buck MP

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