As one of the architects of New Labour, Brown’s Commission is recommending A New Britain.
This New Britain will have a new Constitution that will be guarded by a new Second Chamber replacing the current House of Lords.
While admitting the far-reaching effects of its proposed changes, and claiming to have consulted widely, this 153-page document has ignored the elephant in the room.
Christianity is central to the current UK constitution but the topic is not mentioned nor has this Commission had the wit to include any Christian contribution in its deliberations. Admittedly, there are not many sensible Christians speaking as such in public life. The Report goes beyond political reform showing the need for wider consultation, but the evident partisan nature of this consultation does not bode well for engaging the wider public.
The speed of implementation of the changes, within the first term of a Labour Government, without the need for a referendum p. 144, may reflect the impatience of its chairman. One month after becoming Prime Minister in 2007, Gordon Brown announced plans to implement constitutional change with a Constitutional Reform Bill but his wide-ranging plans were mothballed when the global recession hit hard early in his premiership. At 71 years old, he is likely to be keen to see his long-held and continuously-reworked plans implemented, especially with Labour rising in the Polls on the back of self-inflicted disarray in the Conservative Party ranks.
6 Dec 2022: critics inevitably emerging.