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It's Speaker Week on PM. Read Lord Carey's ideas here:

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Eddie Mair | 17:00 UK time, Thursday, 18 June 2009

Here at PM, we're offering you the chance to vote for the best ideas on cleaning up public life and restoring faith in politics.

We're calling it Speaker Week.

We've asked four people - none of them politicians - to put forward their personal manifestos for change. You can hear them on consecutive nights, and on Friday they'll debate each other.

Then you'll be able to vote by phone for the person whose ideas you like best.

On Monday it was the manifesto of Colonel Tim Collins, which you can read here.

On Tuesday it was the manifesto of A L Kennedy.

Last night, it was the manifesto of Greg Dyke.

Tonight it's the manifesto of Lord Carey.


Feel free to read his words and let us know what you think by clicking on Comments.

"The election of a new Speaker comes as public anger with politicians is at an all-time high, and the reputation of parliament is at its lowest ebb. Against this background, the urgent job of the next Speaker is to restore public trust by opening up the political process to public scrutiny. Proposals for parliamentary pay and expenses to come under an independent watchdog are right and proper. The public needs reassurance that no longer can MPs both set the rules and enforce them. But I am less persuaded by far-reaching proposals for constitutional and electoral reform as a kind of panic measure to restore public trust. Take just one example: in the debate between an elected or an appointed second chamber, I am not convinced that the public has any appetite for yet another body of elected party politicians in their revising chamber. A fully elected House of Lords would become more than a revising chamber; it would challenge the supremacy of the Commons and become yet another locus of power, upsetting our delicate constitutional balance. The Speaker must have a say in defending the authority of the Commons, against executive power in the form of ill-conceived and opportunistic reforms.

So what would I personally like to see? Isn't it time that the term "right honourable" came to mean something again? While Speakers don't have a great deal of actual power, they have a vital role in establishing a strong ethos of trust and accountability. Clear and principled leadership is needed here, including setting an example of openness and communicating clearly with both MPs and the public. Such an ethos would deal firmly with boorish behaviour, and other problems, by appropriate disciplinary procedures.

Second, is a matter of concern that the laws set by Parliament demand accountability from public bodies, charities and private businesses, yet nothing is in place for a regular reporting process from Parliament to the voters. I would like to see an annual report from Parliament, dealing with both financial and political matters, put together by a cross party group of MPs and Peers. This would aim to set out clearly and simply the business conducted by Parliament and its financial affairs. This body would ask whether governments were meeting their manifesto commitments and delivering their programme set out in the Queen's Speech. This method of reporting could be followed by a series of public hearings in Parliament where the public themselves could question their representatives. Furthermore, every member should directly present an annual report to their constituencies in public meetings, setting out all their political and constituency work, financial dealings and second jobs, so that voters can question them between elections.

Third, from a House of Lords perspective, too much legislation comes from the House of Commons half-baked. More than 3000 new laws have been created since 1997. One of the greatest concerns today is the way that the ordinary voter's life has been tied up in red tape. The Speaker has to take some responsibility for ensuring that all measures have adequate time for public consultation, in committees and for debate in the chamber. If that slows down the amount of government legislation that can be put on the statute book in any one session, then so be it."


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