Starmer and Brown to launch reforms on Lords and devolution

Zahawi mocks Keir Starmer's 'very soft numbers'

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Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and ex-Prime Minister Gordon Brown will launch the Commission on the UK’s Future today, a report has revealed. The recommendations put forward by Mr Brown’s commission will look to address House of Lords reform, devolution of power and the future of the United Kingdom. Labour will consult on replacing the House of Lords, which it called “indefensible”, following the launch.

However, according to the Guardian, Labour stopped short of committing to its abolition in the manifesto.

The recommendations, which centre around transferring power from Westminster to local areas, come after Sir Keir complained: “The centre hasn’t delivered.”

Mr Brown claimed that cultivating “300 emerging clusters of the new economy” and eliminating “Westminster and Whitehall bias and giving everywhere a fair share of our future prosperity”.

Southside said that one of the former Prime Minister’s recommendations would be the abolition of the Lords.

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Labour also claimed Mr Brown hopes to put forward new rules to “end the undue influence of wealth and foreign money, and prevent MPs part-timing the job”.

All 40 of Mr Brown’s recommendations will now be subject to consultation.

The result of that further process will end up in Labour’s manifesto for the next general election.

Despite proposing similar Lords reforms, Mr Brown and Sir Keir reportedly disagree over whether the move is deliverable in the first term of a Labour Government.

But the Holborn & St Pancras MP is now expected to pledge to give people “democratic control over their lives” if he emerges victorious when Brits next go to the polls.

Brown’s revamped upper chamber is expected to be called the Assembly of Nations and Regions.

According to the Guardian, Sir Keir will say on Monday: “We have an unbalanced economy, which makes too little use of the talents of too few people in too few places.

“We will have higher standards in public life, a wider spread of power and opportunity, and better economic growth that benefits everyone, wherever they are.

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“By setting our sights higher, wider, better, we can build a better future together.”

In an interview with the Sunday Times, the Labour leader added: “The answer is that this is the bit of the discussion that comes after Monday, because that’s testing the propositions, refining them, and then crucially answering, thinking when and how this is implemented.

“What will require legislation, what won’t require legislation, whether we want to do each of the steps.

“The purpose of that is to craft a manifesto that says, ‘This is the overall project, these are the bits we intend to do in the five years, this is the delivery you can expect to see.'”

However, proposing to abolish the House of Lords would likely lead to a backlash in the upper chamber.

Lord Speaker and former Labour MP Lord McFall is expected to give a speech on Wednesday in which he will put forward consensus-based reform of the chamber.

Another peer told the Observer: “It sounds a good idea but, in the past, attempts to reform the Lords have led into a political quagmire.”

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