||The recent Conservative vote of no confidence struck a chord with me.
Twenty-five signatures or letters were sent to the 1922 committee, triggering
the referendum of confidence in their leader.
Having thought about it, I believe what is good enough for the Conservative
party must be good enough for the British electorate. A mechanism for a
specified number of British people to trigger a full referendum on a particular
matter of Governance or even a confidence vote in the Government itself if it
gets completely out of touch with the electorate.
The Conservatives are currently using the argument that many referendums have
been held across the country by New Labour and are requesting one on the
European Union Constitution, so I do not believe the Conservatives have a
legitimate argument against the British people having the means to request a
referendum directly themselves. I do not know whether New Labour have a similar
rule within their party but if so would mean they must back such a mechanism
I am amazed that many organizations have rules to ensure democratic decision
making is ensured yet our country has to live with a Government for five years
without legal recourse. Organizations including our political parties which
would doubtless not back such democracy in the country as a whole.
The current situation of the opposition party begging for a referendum only
highlights the need for an official legitimate mechanism for the people to hold
a binding referendum, rather than live in a dictatorship for all but one day
every five years.
|Date Issue Raised:
||31 Oct 2003
||Thank you for the email.
While I understand your argument, I do not agree with it. The referendums you refer to have been agreed by Parliament, and the Conservative Party is arguing that Parliament should authorise a referendum on the new EU Constitution. If we are returned at a General Election, that is what will happen.
You want a referendum that is not authorised by Parliament - indeed one that may overturn something that Parliament has done. I think it very difficult to reconcile that with our system of Parliamentary sovereignty.