Time for bishops to leave the House of Lords
The plans are that the House of Lords should be either 100% or 80% elected. I don't want to express an opinion about whether it should be 80% or 100%. But if we are going to appoint 20% I want to make sure that that does not include, as a matter of right, 26 Anglican bishops. Of course if some committee decides it wants to appoint any bishops, fine. And to be honest someone like Rowan Williams is probably the kind of person I would want.
But we cannot continue to have a constitution that deliberately favours one particular religion and one particular denomination. It should not be the right of 26 Anglican bishops to vote on national legislation.
Last year as part of the Power 2010 movement, over 50,000 people wrote emails to those 26 bishops asking them to support a pro-demoncracy reform that would include an elected House of Lords. I don't know if there was ever any official response from the bishops, but perhaps now is the time for another letter writing campaign.
It's frankly embarrassing and undemocratic to still have religious officials in our Parliament like this, and now is the time to get them out.
What a wonderful Christ-like witness it would be if they voluntarily left, rather than hanging on to their antiquated powers. But if they don't do it, the people should make it clear that we don't want them there.