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Posts Tagged ‘Recall’

38 Degrees at Labour party conference

September 25th, 2014 by

This week it was the Labour party’s conference. In the run up to the election, it’s anyone’s guess who will be in power after next May. So 38 Degrees members are getting stuck in early. We’re making sure that all the political parties on the table hear about the issues that matter to us.

On Monday, over forty 38 Degrees members gathered outside the entrance to the conference. Armed with leaflets, we made sure that every person going in or out heard our message: the NHS should be given more funding. It was quite an experience!

Some people were really keen to talk, but others – striding past in suits – didn’t stop. A funny reaction from people at a conference aimed at talking broadly about all the issues facing the country at the moment!

But by and large, it was a good experience. Our flyers also had adverts for an event that 38 Degrees was holding the next day on our campaign for a real recall law. We must have had an impact, as the next day the room was packed!

The event was organised to try to get Labour MPs on board with out campaign for a law that gives voters the right to sack MPs. A real recall law. 38 Degrees members helped fund and write a law that would give voters these powers. But we need to get MPs from across the political parties on board to have a chance of success.

It was standing room only! The room was STUFFED full of MPs and PPCs (people who are standing to be MPs at the next election). In particular, lots of PPCs mentioned that they came along because they’d received emails from 38 Degrees members inviting them earlier in the week. They said they wouldn’t have missed it. Some PPCs even took photos of themselves with staff members to prove they’d been there. If this is the future of how politicians interact with their voters – it’s looking up!

There was a stellar line up on the panel. Lisa Nandy MP spoke in favour of recall alongside Blanche, from the 38 Degrees staff team, who was chairing. Then there was Owen Jones, a columnist for the Guardian, Jonathan Isaby from the TaxPayers Alliance and Joe Cox from the think tank Compass. All of them made a convincing pitch of why the time is right for a real recall law.

38 Degrees members were a lively presence at Labour’s conference – and our event has put a real recall law on the map with many MPs. Next, 38 Degrees members will be at the Conservative and Lib Dem conferences: to make sure all the parties know what ordinary people think about recall, and act on it.

Here are some pictures of 38 Degrees members flyering outside the conference on Monday:

Flyering outside Labour party conference in Manchester

Flyering outside Labour party conference in Manchester

Flyering outside Labour party conference in Manchester

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A real recall law: Event at Conservative Conference

September 24th, 2014 by

Here are the details of the 38 Degrees event on a Real Recall law at Conservative Party Conference:

Real Recall: a better democracy
19.15 – 20.30, Tuesday 30th September
Lodge 1, IET Birmingham
Austin Court, 80 Cambridge Street, Birmingham, B1 2NP

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It could go either way. Conservative backbench MPs could decide to support 38 Degrees members’ definition of recall: the one that puts voters in charge of sacking MPs. Or they could support their government’s plans, which put MPs in charge.

Even though, on paper, Conservative MPs should be supportive of the government – we know that many backbench MPs are wavering.  But what better timing to convince them to vote for real recall? The Conservative Party conference is in Birmingham from Sunday – a great opportunity to get straight in front of the party machine.

So, the 38 Degrees staff team have quickly put together an event at the conference. There’ll be a panel of people aimed at convincing Conservative MPs, prospective candidates and party members to support giving more power to voters. To have the biggest impact, the room needs to be packed.

It’s people-power that’ll get them there. MPs and prospective MPs are much more likely to turn up if they know their voters want them to. Could you invite your MP? Or the person who wants to be your Conservative MP to come to the event? It’s on Tuesday morning, so please invite them now, by clicking here.

The event has a stellar line up – including Zac Goldsmith MP, the chief of the Taxpayers’ Alliance, and the Senior Political Correspondent at the Telegraph. It’ll be a pretty convincing panel.

Already lots of backbench Conservative MPs have signed up in support of the campaign. But getting as much support as possible from within Tory ranks is crucial. Their votes and the pressure they can bring could be what wins this.

We deserve a proper democracy. One where the power to hold our MPs to account sits with voters. A real recall law that empowers voters is within our grasp. But to get this change, enough Conservative MPs will have to back it when it’s being voted on in a few weeks.

The event at their conference is a good way to do this. But it needs to be packed. Please send an invitation now.

If you’re in Birmingham on Tuesday, please do come to the event. It would be great to have as many 38 Degrees members there as possible.

Here are the details:
Real Recall: a better democracy
When: 19.15 – 20.30, Tuesday 30th September
Where: Lodge 1, IET Birmingham: Austin Court, 80 Cambridge Street, Birmingham, B1 2NP

Posted in 38 Degrees Blog Posts

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Recall: it’s a fudge

September 12th, 2014 by

Breaking news: the government has released its plans for a new law which will allow MPs to be sacked.

Scandal followed by scandal: that’s what we’re used to hearing about our MPs. The government’s ‘recall law’ was meant to restore our trust in politicians. But as suspected it’s an absolute fudge. It puts MPs in charge of sacking MPs … and not voters!

Together, we can put voters in charge and convince the government to scrap their law. And replace it with our own. We’re already armed with a rival law that 38 Degrees members paid for and helped write. It’ll give voters the right to sack their MPs. What’s more, a group of top MPs from all parties have backed it.

Giving normal people the power to sack MPs could be the most significant change to the way Britain does politics in decades – and it’s within our grasp. Can you ask your MP, Jane Ellison, to sign up to support the law that puts power in voters’ hands?

Click here to send a quick email now.

Here’s why getting your MP to back the rival law will help us win:

- The government’s got a growing rebellion on their hands. If we act fast, it’ll pile on the pressure for them to replace their watered-down plans.
- We need MPs from all political parties to support the rival law. It’s not a simple left or right issue. Every MP matters – so it’s crucial your MP backs the rival law too.
- Our law works. It’s been written by top lawyers and its watertight. The government could pass it tomorrow. They can see we’re serious.

Click here to email your MP to ask them to sign up in support of giving voters more power:

So far, our campaign is working. Tens of thousands of us have signed the 38 Degrees petition for our rival law. And lots of MPs are backing it, so it’s already a controversial issue that’s been splashed across the media.

If our MPs hear from us today, we can make sure its our version of the story they’re hearing.

Posted in 38 Degrees Blog Posts

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The people-powered Recall of MPs Bill

September 8th, 2014 by

The people-powered Recall of MPs Bill, that 38 Degrees members chipped in to pay for, is back from the lawyers. Our Recall of MPs Bill gives people, not MPs, the power to recall their MP when enough people feel their MP isn’t doing their job properly.

Click here to read the final version. It’s pretty exciting to have a final version of the Bill, it wasn’t just paid for by 38 Degrees members, but it was also helped written by 38 Degrees members. It’s also been scrutinised and improved by a cross-party group of MPs.

Our Recall of MPs Bill is now being tabled as a presentation Bill. Over the coming weeks 38 Degrees members now have to persuade all our MPs to support it!

Please comment below with your thoughts and ideas for the next stage of the campaign.

Posted in 38 Degrees Blog Posts

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MP recall committee meeting

July 11th, 2014 by

On Monday, the MP recall committee met in parliament to scrutinise a Bill funded by small donations from thousands of 38 Degrees members.

Our Recall of MPs Bill gives people, not MPs, the power to recall their MP when enough people feel their MP isn’t doing their job properly.

Read the brief summary of the meeting here: MP recall committee brief summary

If you want to read the full meeting notes, click here: MP recall committee full meeting notes

Here’s a picture from the meeting:

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MP Recall committee meeting video

July 10th, 2014 by

“In a democracy, you end up trusting the people”.

Those were David Davis MP’s fitting last words as he brought the MP recall committee meeting to an end on Monday.

It was a first: bringing a committee of MPs together to scrutinise a Bill funded by small donations from thousands of us. It caused a big fuss in parliament. And even made the news!

It feels like together, we’re really getting somewhere and the government is sitting up and taking notice.

The committee meeting itself was really useful. There were some differences of opinion and lots of MPs made helpful suggestions for how to improve the Bill. But most agreed with the spirit of it – that it should be voters who decide when and how MPs should be sacked for doing a bad job.

This video gives a taster of what what happened:

Throughout the meeting, the committee referred to the survey results of your views on the Bill. Everywhere in the room you could feel the presence of 38 Degrees members – and MPs felt it too!

The lawyer – paid for by 38 Degrees members – is now working on the next version of the Bill, which includes the few small changes raised by MPs in the meeting. Some are easy to implement. But there’s a really tricky bit around how to regulate how much money can be spent during the recall process. This is to ensure that it’s fair playing field and we keep big money out of it.

Last week, 38 Degrees members said that getting this part right was important – and MPs agreed. If we don’t, it will be difficult to get the support we need to get the Bill through parliament and made into law.

But this means lots more work for our lawyer and the Bill needs to be ready before MPs leave parliament for the summer next week. Can you chip in to fund the final version of our Recall of MPs Bill?

To watch the video and donate securely, click here.

It’s a pretty extraordinary thing we’re trying to do here. It’s a radical, ambitious plan to get a real recall law, but so far everything’s going well. Once we have a real recall law that both 38 Degrees members and MPs are happy with, then we can then influence the party leaders to accept it.

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The MP committee on our Recall of MPs Bill

July 9th, 2014 by

On Monday the committee of MPs met to scrutinise our Recall of MPs Bill, which 38 Degrees members paid for. It was a really fascinating discussion. And there were lots of really helpful suggestions for how we can improve the Bill.

Here are a few photographs of the event:

Recall committee meeting

Recall committee meeting

Recall committee meeting

Recall committee meeting

Recall committee meeting

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Recall of MPs Bill Briefing

July 9th, 2014 by

On Monday a committee of MPs came together to scrutinise the Recall of MPs Bill that 38 Degrees members paid for.

To read the briefing that helped inform the debate please click here.

In this briefing you will find:

    • Foreword – written by the Rt Hon David Davis MP, Chair of the Backbench Initiative on the Recall of MPs Bill
    • The draft Recall of MPs Bill
    • The process and further explanation of the draft
    • Recall of MPs Bill
    • The results of the consultation with over 30,000 members of 38 Degrees

Recall committee meeting

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Recall committee: it’s happening!

July 2nd, 2014 by

Last week over 30,000 members of 38 Degrees fed in to make sure our draft genuine recall law was as good as possible. And now the committee of 21 MPs from seven political parties has been announced. The committee is meeting next week to scrutinise the law line by line. It aims to be a purposeful discussion – it won’t have the pomp and circumstance of a normal House of Commons committee. And it will be live tweeted – allowing *normal people* to feed in and ask questions.

Once the committee are confident with it, 38 Degrees members will then decide if they’re happy. We will then present it to the leaders of all political parties in the House with a recommendation that they use this as the basis for legislation promised.

The committee has been assembled by Zac Goldsmith, and will be chaired by Former Shadow Home Secretary David Davis MP. It includes the former Chief Whip, Andrew Mitchell, former Health Minister Paul Burstow MP and Labour MP Katy Clark.

Full list of MPs involved:
David Davis (Conservative)
Zac Goldsmith (Conservative)
Douglas Carswell (Conservative)
Anne Marie Morris (Conservative)
Jacob Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
Caroline Nokes (Conservative)
Andrew Mitchell (Conservative)
Robert Buckland (Conservative)
Nick de Bois (Conservative)
Tracey Crouch (Conservative)
Frank Field (Labour)
Yasmin Qureshi (Labour)
Katy Clark (Labour)
Jim Fitzpatrick (Labour)
Kate Hoey (Labour)
Julian Huppert (Lib Dem)
Paul Burstow (Lib Dem)
Jonathan Edwards (Plaid Cymru)
Caroline Lucas (Green)
Mark Durkan (SDLP
Angus MacNeil (SNP)

Here’s what some of the MPs involved had to say:

Zac Goldsmith MP said: “Recall is supposed to be about empowering voters to hold their MPs to account, and the Government’s proposals fall scandalously short. They don’t empower voters in any meaningful sense at all, and at the very first scandal, they will realise they have been duped. This cross-party Committee demonstrates that even if Party leaders have no appetite for reform, parliament does, and I very much hope the Bill we produce will make its way into law.”

David Davis MP said: “Genuine recall is critical to build the reputation and credibility of parliament. And so it is appropriate that we create a recall law that is produced with the public and MPs working alongside each other.  Once the committee is confident that they are happy with the Bill we will present it to the leaders of all political parties in the House with a recommendation that they use this as the basis for legislation promised in this year’s Queen’s speech.”

Katy Clark MP said “The Recall Bill which the Government has proposed does not go anywhere near far enough. The idea of recall is that voters have the power to recall MPs in certain circumstances where there has been a substantial loss of confidence in an individual due to conduct.  Under these proposals the power to dismiss MPs will remain in the hands of the judiciary and the House of Commons. We need a proper recall law which will deliver power to voters. I am very pleased to have the opportunity to work alongside like-minded colleagues so that we can secure a genuine recall law where the public can recall MPs”

Julian Huppert MP said “I want to see legislation which empowers the public to recall their MPs; they elected them and they should have the power to recall them for serious misdemeanors.

Giving the initial decision to a committee of MPs falls short of what is needed here. We set out to repair the relationship between politicians and the public and the Recall Bill can go some way to achieving that – but it must be fit for purpose.”

Posted in 38 Degrees Blog Posts

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Recall: Member consultation Results

July 1st, 2014 by

Over 30,000 members of 38 Degrees fed in their views on the member-funded recall bill. The members answered questions on nine different components of the bill. There overwhelming support for most of the components and broad agreement with some of the most technical aspects of the bill.

Here are some of the comments from 38 Degrees members:

“MPs have shown time and time again that their version of self-regulation is ineffective. The proposed committee of MPs here would be just as ineffective. The 38 Degrees draft bill is necessary if we are to have a truly democratic recall system.”

“I believe most MPs are sincere in their desire to serve their electorate and will not be troubled by this ‘law’. Hopefully, this law will drive out those who are not.”

“MPs get too comfortable knowing they hold majority. The threat of recall could cause MPs to focus back on their constituencies!”

The original consultation can be accessed here.

The results for each individual question can be seen in the pie charts below:

The 38 Degrees draft law puts voters in charge of deciding whether to recall an MP rather than a committee of MPs (which is what the government’s proposing). Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 94%
  • No: 5%
  • Don’t know: 1%

The 38 Degrees draft law says that if voters lose confidence in MPs, we should be able to recall him/ her in any circumstances. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 82%
  • No – it should only be when an MP breaks the law: 11%
  • No, it should only be if an MP is guilty of financial misconduct: 3%
  • I don’t know: 4%
<p> </p>
The 38 Degrees draft recall law says that if an MP is going through legal proceedings, the recall process should be paused until they have been found innocent or guilty. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 93%
  • No: 6%
  • Don’t know: 1%

The 38 Degrees draft law says that 20% of constituents are in favour of recalling their MP, a referendum of the whole constituency should be triggered. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 64%
  • No, it should be a higher percentage: 28%
  • No, it should be a lower percentage: 5%
  • I don’t know: 3%
<p> </p>
The 38 Degrees draft law says that central government should pay for the recall process. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 95%
  • No: 1%
  • Don’t know: 4%

The 38 Degrees draft law says that constituents should be able to sign the first stage of the recall process (which would trigger the actual recall petition) online and in person. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 97%
  • No: 1%
  • Don’t know: 2%
<p> </p>
The 38 Degrees draft law says that constituents should only be able to sign the second stage of the recall process (the actual recall petition) in person. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 72%
  • No: 18%
  • Don’t know: 10%

The 38 Degrees draft law sets limits on how much money can be spent on the campaigns during the recall process. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 94%
  • No: 1%
  • Don’t know: 5%
<p> </p>
The 38 Degrees draft law doesn’t have any limits for how many times an MP can be subject to a recall process per parliament. Does this sound right?

  • Yes: 83%
  • No: 13%
  • Don’t know: 4%

Posted in 38 Degrees Blog Posts

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