The Five Desirable Qualities
22. In putting forward our views on reform of
the House of Lords, we identified five qualities which we consider
essential to a reformed House.
The five qualities are tests to be applied to the composition
of a House which is to perform its role effectively.
23. The five qualities are:
· no domination
by one party
24. We do not want to rehearse here in detail
our discussion of these matters in our First Report but we stress
that we were unanimous in agreeing to their importance. Nor has
anything which has been said in the debates in both Houses seriously
challenged this conclusion. Many Members emphasised the need for
lack of domination by one party and worry was expressed about
the degree of political patronage in the existing system of appointments.
In his remarks on the second day of the debate in the House of
Lords, the Lord Chancellor said that reform of the Lords should
produce a House which was not "a rival nor a pale imitation'
of the Commons and one that is not 'dominated by the political
parties either collectively or singly; that brings to its deliberations
distinctive expertise and experience".
The five qualities we have enumerated and discussed in our First
Report are designed to produce exactly that.
25. In both Houses, the need for a strong independent
element in a reformed second chamber was voiced by supporters
of every position on composition.