MPs are elected to keep a party in office but they are also elected as the only people with effective power to check a government drawn from that party. The job of a backbench MP is only possible if these two potentially divergent responsibilities can be run in tandem. If a Blair government intends that one of these responsibilities should automatically prevail over the other, it would complete the transition which began with the onset of election television, from a parliamentary to a presidential system of government. If Mr Blair intends to introduce a presidential system he must also introduce the constitutional safeguards appropriate to such a system, beginning with a written constitution.
Liberal Democrat Spokesman on Social Security
House of Lords
London SW1Reuse content