Dear Chief Secretary to the Treasury,
I'm afraid to tell you there's no money left.
Signed, Liam Byrne

(Outgoing Labour Chief Secretary to the Treasury. May 2010)

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Gordon's Gift to the House of Lords

The previous Prime Minister (the Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP) undertook a process to recommend to the Queen new party-political life peerages. This consisted of working peers from each party and, as is customary at the end of a Parliament, a dissolution list for former MPs.

Mrs Rigby has chosen to show pictures of three of our soon-to-be Peers, chosen for three very different reasons.

Mr John Leslie Prescott. (picture Telegraph) Reported to have said that he would reject the offer of a peerage, but his wife Pauline changed his mind.

Mrs Rigby found this picture of soon-to-be-a-Peer Ian Paisley in the Guardian. Depending on your point of view he either rightly stood his ground or blocked progress, but in the end negotiated with long term enemy, Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness. His son, also Ian, is now MP for North Antrim.

Sir Ian Blair. Ex-Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police. The BBC says His attempt to cling to office was ultimately futile; confidence drained away, friends beyond government were hard to find. Picture BBC

The Labour Party claimed it would modernise the House of Lords.

Each of the people named in Mr Brown's list of new Peers will have their say in how Britain is governed, and will be paid a daily allowance to attend the House of Lords. They will have this right for the rest of their lives.

For ease, here is a quick view of the full list of new peerages. (Mail)

Oh, and Michael Howard, who is listed as "former Home Secretary, and held other senior posts in government and opposition" was also leader of the Conservative Party between 2003 and 2005 and was, therefore, Leader of the Opposition. Maybe that's what whoever drew up the list means by 'other senior posts'.

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