Posts Tagged ‘boundary commission’

The Monday column: When will Momentum strike?

13/11/2017, 10:00:44 PM

There was a good reason why the Roman Senate forbade the army from entering the city. Armies have a single purpose: to dominate and control. That’s what armies do: They march forward and vanquish enemies. Or there’s not really much point in having one.

From the grand events of antiquity to the humdrum affairs of Labour’s internal politics.

Momentum, Jeremy Corbyn’s Praetorian Guard, was created out of the remarkable insurgency that propelled him to the Labour leadership back in 2015.

It made sense for the Corbnyintes to try and bottle that enthusiasm and organisation, but Momentum was, from the very beginning, created as a standing army outside of the party’s control.

A back-up plan. If Corbyn was usurped by his internal opponents, Momentum could rely on hundreds of thousands of members and graduate into a new left-wing political party.

But June’s general election result has made Corbyn unassailable. His critics have withered. There is no realistic threat to his position, which begs the question: What is Momentum now for? Does it find itself without a purpose, or is it preparing the cross the Rubicon and seize control of Labour’s internal workings?

There have been skirmishes over the past few months, with local branches and constituencies across the country falling under the hard left’s influence. Meanwhile, Momentum’s founder, Jon Lansman, is currently running for a seat on the party’s National Executive Committee.

And while it’s likely that a swathe of moderate councillors will be replaced by Momentum supporters next year, robust local government regulations will prevent the hard left from being able to force through illegal budgets and the like.

But Momentum has bigger ambitions and the mandatory reselection of MPs remains the Holy Grail.

So far, Jeremy Corbyn has been incredibly cautious about triggering a full-on civil war with his MPs over this, but if Theresa May presses ahead with the parliamentary boundary changes for the next election, Labour MPs will, de facto, face mandatory reselection.

Indeed, if she wants to bequeath a once-in-a-generation advantage to her party on the way out of Number Ten, Theresa May will allow the Boundary Commission to proceed with its work of cutting the number of constituencies from 650 to 600.

A full-on offensive to replace moderates with true-believing Corbynites will be too great for Momentum to resist. The resulting schism with the party’s moderate wing will cripple the British centre-left for a generation.

Can Momentum resist the urge to dominate and control?

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Wheeler Briefing: stop the great Tory seat robbery

08/03/2011, 07:45:35 AM

by Peter Wheeler

On Friday last week, the boundary commissions for England, Wales Scotland and Northern Ireland, each announced the start of the process of reviewing the boundaries of the Parliamentary constituencies on which we will (probably) fight the next general election.

This review will be conducted in line with the recent Parliamentary voting and constituencies bill, and is the Tories’ reward for agreeing to a referendum on AV.

PREVIOUS  PROCEDURE

Since 1944, independent Parliamentary boundary commissions have conducted periodic reviews of the boundaries of Parliamentary constituencies. The review launched on Friday is the sixth. Each country in the UK has its own boundary commission, which submits a report directly to Parliament, the reviews happening roughly every 10 years and coming into effect at the election after they have been accepted.

The boundary commission would publish provisional recommendations for boundaries, usually on a county or London borough basis. These would be open to public comment and, usually a public enquiry, before the boundary commission published its final proposals. Currently, the boundary commission is required to come up with seats that are roughly equal in electorates (around 68,715 in England ) but is also required to take a number of other factors into account , for example:

  • local government boundaries ;
  • geography
  • community ties (more…)
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