Will Straw: can he read?

Apparently not:

As the chart below shows, in his short tenure as Prime Minister, David Cameron has already created 117 new Lords. Indeed, David Cameron is creating peers at a rate ten times faster than his predecessor, Gordon Brown, and three times faster than Tony Blair.

Well Will, let\’s have a look at what the report you\’re referring to actually says, shall we?

The most problematic category in the present context is perhaps
the resignation honours list, made by a departing Prime Minister. Many of David
Cameron’s first group of appointments were in fact Gordon Brown’s resignation honours.
It has become an established convention that a departing Prime Minister should be able to
leave such appointments for his or her successor, though (probably due to the controversy
over ‘cash for honours’ shortly beforehand) no resignation honours were made after Tony
Blair stepped down. David Cameron’s first block of 56 appointments in May 2010 included
32 resignation honours, 23 dissolution Honours (see below), and one other (a peerage for
retiring Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ian Blair, falling into the category above).

Yup. Some half of \”Cameron\’s\” appointments are actually nothing to do with Cameron. Of that half, around half are in fact Gordon Brown\’s appointments, to make up for those years of lips firmly fixed to his posterior. The other half being the kicking upstairs of the usual riunks and wastrels who couldn\’t manage to keep a Commons seat even under our current electoral system.

The other half of that massive number of appointments?

Yes, the working peers:

Tony
Blair made several rounds of such appointments (as demonstrated by Figure 1), and David
Cameron appointed a group of 54 in November 2010.

And not even a plurality of those were Conservatives.

A small suggestion for Our Will. Do try reading (and if you can\’t get someone to read it to you) the report you\’re commenting on, there\’s a good lad?

Otherwise people might think you\’re just spouting propaganda rather than \”evidence-based analysis on British politics, policy, and current affairs.\”

3 comments on “Will Straw: can he read?

  1. Although I agree with you Tim, Dave doesn’t *have* to abide by Gordon Brown’s last will and testament.

    Convention is something they hide behind or overlook entirely when it suits them.

  2. Thanks for pointing this out – I had missed it and have amended the piece to exclude the Gordon Brown resignation honours and Labour’s dissolution honours. Even so, it still means that Cameron is creating peers at six times the rate of Brown and twice the rate of Blair and the substantive point remains that Clegg has a hypocritical position on Lords reform.

    http://www.leftfootforward.org/2011/04/despite-calls-for-wholly-elected-lords-clegg-supports-camerons-peer-packing/

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