B) Using Your Own Knowledge as Well as the Extract, Explain Why Recent Reforms Can Be Said to Have Made the House of Lords More Legitimate.

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b) Using your own knowledge as well as the extract, explain why recent reforms can be said to have made the House of Lords more legitimate. Recent reforms have made the House of Lords more legitimate, the 2001 reforms made by Blair’s government meant that that most hereditary peers were no longer part of the Lords – this meant that the people in the Lords were not their because of their blood but because of their expertise and interest in subjects relating to discussing inside the chamber. Blair, by removing hereditary peers made the Lords more accountable and more professional. The Lords become a real discussion based chamber with key figures from around the country invited to discuss and debate topics which meant something to them. However, the Lords have always had a strong hold on the Commons, overriding them more times than the government’s own backbenchers. The greatest number of Lords defeats suffered by any government was 126 inflicted on Labour during the 1975-76 government. The changes in the Lords also meant that there is no party majority in the Lords and many of the members are apolitical, not taking a party stance. This makes the Lords more representative than the commons some suggest, as the Lords do not toe a party line as forcefully as the Commons. The Lords has also become more legitimate since the reforms because it’s influence has increased, the Lords are now looked to by the Commons to see what they think of what the government is doing more and more. They scrutinise the government’s decisions and make suggestions and changes to policy. More and more often the Lords reject or request changes to legislation from the Commons which most of the time the Commons agree with or work on – this highlights how effective and influential the Lords are. c) How successfully does Parliament perform its representative functions in modern Britain?
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