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Should MPs job share?

12:51 UK time, Friday, 10 September 2010

Pairs of parliamentary candidates should be allowed to stand in general elections and share the job if elected, Green Party's leader Caroline Lucas has said. Do you agree?

Ms Lucas said "If you have job sharing MPs, what that would allow you to do is to keep MPs with a foot in their community, keep their caring responsibilities, do voluntary work, continue part time in their profession."

At the party's conference in Birmingham she also appealed to Lib Dem supporters disillusioned with the coalition's policies to join her party.

Are you attending the Green Party conference? Did you listen to the speech by Caroline Lucas? Do you job share? What are your views on MPs job sharing? Will the proposal keep MPs more in touch with their constituencies?

Thank you for your comments. This debate is now closed.


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  • Comment number 1.

    If Ms Lucas has an agent, in common with most parties, then there is already a 'permanent' link between MPs and their constituents. The argument about job sharing is, however, interesting, suggesting we have many more 'part time' servants to the great electorate, more expense, and more trouble when there is a vote of conscience.

    Think it through, Ms Lucas, put some flesh on it and then announce it as 'cutting edge'.

  • Comment number 2.

    What absolute tosh. Once again it shows that the Greens are out of touch with the real world.

    Or is it a way for her to get more MPs into the House!

  • Comment number 3.

    Interesting!! Two MPs for each constituency, can we afford it? Will each get a vote in the Commons? When the house divides will it take longer to count. Would job sharing be between MPs from the same or different political parties. It won't work and we do have more pressing things to deal with, like the economy.

  • Comment number 4.

    20 years or more ago this idea might have made sense, but given the standard of communications technology we have now, there's no reason for it. Sure, constituency and Westminster business put together is undoubtedly a significant workload but that's how they have to try and justify their still obscene pay and perks.

  • Comment number 5.

    No, being an MP should be a vocation and if you can only be bothered to do it part time, or only have the availablility to do it part time then quite frankly you should not be doing it.

  • Comment number 6.

    Great idea split one large salary to give two people a job with reasonable reward for the same money a great model to takle some of this countries enemployment where many earn enough to keep 2 or more in work. Unfortunately this is as likely to happen as the greens getting a number of MPs into parliament as reflected by their share of the popular vote. weve all heard of blue skys thinging this is Green skys thinking fresh ideas in our tired out political system.

  • Comment number 7.

    I was once a member of the Green Party but left after it started creating 'Red' sections. These eventually grew into the 'Watermelon' party that the Greens are now.
    No doubt Caroline wants to share more power with her lefty mates in All New Labour (or whatever that numpty Milliband ends up calling NuLab). Although, strictly speaking, the Greens are now more fascist than Marxist so maybe common cause with the odious BNP perhaps?

  • Comment number 8.

    Whilst job sharing is fine in some industries and the introduction of such is to be applauded, I fail to see how this work with Members of Parliament. You place your vote for one person to represent you not two.

  • Comment number 9.

    BBC, I would like to correct your news report above that says :

    "Ms Lucas became the Green Party's first MP at the last general election but the party's share was less than that of UKIP and the British National Party"

    She didn't get a smaller share of the vote in the constituency which she won.

    Anyway, to answer the question, no I don't think MPs should job share.

    I also don't think Cameron should be gerrymandering, as is his intention.

  • Comment number 10.

    Double the numbers of nose-in-the-trough liars?

    No thanks.

  • Comment number 11.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 12.

    What a load of cods wallop..why should we women expect others to change the way parliament and the Country are governed just to get women into parliament..if they want to become an MP then they know the job description before they even apply. Also why should we in the times of "cut backs" have to pay another inflated salary and inflated expenses..please get with the real world and stop living in fantasy land.

  • Comment number 13.

    An excellent proposal. I have said to my friends a few times that we should have 2 MP's for each constituency, with one remaining PERMANENTLY within the constituency and one remaining in London. They could swap about every year or so. And they could share the wages. Any who didn't like those conditions can go and do something else.

  • Comment number 14.

    Just the kind of daft scheme you'd expect from the greens!

  • Comment number 15.

    Really the last thing we need is more politicians....didn't they think about the impact on the enviroment this will have!!!!

  • Comment number 16.

    Whilst I share none of the political views of Caroline Lucas, I do think this is a very good idea. As long as it remains voluntary and does not become compulsary it SHOULD bring the best of two minds to Parliament. The danger of course is that it MAY bring the worst of two minds to our legislation process.


  • Comment number 17.

    Highly impractical! How would they cope with a free vote, where both disagreed on the issue?
    I thought she represented the "Green Party" not the "I opened my mouth without thinking Party"

  • Comment number 18.

    This woman and her party are a waste of space. Their policies like the majority of their members would be best locked away in a dustbin.

  • Comment number 19.

    #1 But would 'ordinary' people be so aware of these agents? I'd suggest not, as often some people are not sure who their MP is! So they may not know to communicate with their MP through an agent. What Ms Lucas is suggesting is a lot more transparent and is therefore to be welcomed.

  • Comment number 20.

    I can´t think of anything more inefficient.

  • Comment number 21.

    On Friday she told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that it was just the latest example of the Green Party being at the "cutting edge of new ideas".

    May be a green idea, but it seems a bit of a green mouldy one.

  • Comment number 22.

    Should MPs job share?
    I’d like to say YES because I believe this would increase female representation in Government, but…
    Job-sharing is a form of part-time work; so, there are regulations that must be implemented.
    Reorganising the hours of work is a contractual matter between employer and worker. In reorganising workloads, the employer (the Government in this case) will have be in legal compliance. In reorganising workloads, part-time workers must not be treated less favourably than full-time workers, unless this treatment can be objectively justified.
    Previous or current part-time status cannot constitute a barrier to promotion or special assignment, whether the post is full-time or part-time. As a result of the regulations, part-time workers must receive the same basic rate of pay as comparable full-time workers. They must not be given a lower hourly rate, unless justified by objective grounds.
    Then there is access to the pension scheme. Under Regulations, the employer is required to offer the part-timers access to the pension scheme on the same basis as the full-time workers, unless their exclusion can be justified on objective grounds.
    Okay, okay enough...I think you get my point.
    When workers (Green Party member, or other MP) request to work part-time, it is helpful if the employer has a procedure for handling the request.
    I doubt that The Coalition Government has this at-the-ready for job-sharing (aka parttime MPs).
    I don’t think that this suggestion has been analyzed for all potential problems, and it surely is not as simple as saying: "Let's job share!".
    I agree in principle, but...

  • Comment number 23.

    mipa @ no. 5

    MP's are unable to be in two places at once. I think Ms Lucas is not suggesting they go part-time but acknowledging that, in fact, one MP is unable to do their work in both London and their constituency. This is surely the case, as we often hear how constituents do not see their MP from one election to the next. While Ms Lucas has not put it in these terms, I would be happy if their job-sharing saw them make more of an attempt to work in both London and constituency, with one paying particular concern to listening to constituents' wishes and acting on them. Very likely this will not happen, but it should be something to strive for.

  • Comment number 24.

    What a daft idea from the greens, its little wonder they have only one MP. Now twice as many MPs will be travelling around and claiming expenses.

  • Comment number 25.

    What if the two job share MP's disagree on a vote, who gets to vote in parliament?

  • Comment number 26.

    This has nothing to do with improving contact with constituents or providing a better is all to do with providing more part time jobs for women and getting more women into parliament /politics. In my work experience, job sharing is only suitable for low level jobs that do not require continuity in decision making, taking responsibility or ensuring completion/delivery of projects on time. Job sharing MPs will turn up and keep benches warm during some debates but actually do very little of importance. Won't stop them claiming expenses or allowances though. An MP's job should be full time with a lot of extra hours on top when the job requires it. I, for one, would never vote for a job share duo.

  • Comment number 27.

    Ridiculous halfbaked idea from a ridiculous half baked party.

  • Comment number 28.

    With crazy ideas like this perhaps one seat is more than enough for M/s Lucas and her party.

    I can only imagine the state of things if like Australia there were only three maverick MP's holding the balance of power.

  • Comment number 29.

    If the greens can get 2 mp's voted in and if they want to job share what's the problem?

    I would object to doubling the total number of elected candidates to enable this though.

  • Comment number 30.

    #4 - I think that we have to remember that some people would still prefer that their MP took the time to actually show up in their constituency to chat to them, rather than choosing to use the latest technology to deign to talk to them from London by video link or some such malarkey. Using the internet or whatever to communicate is still impersonal and conveys the impression that the MP's still can't really be bothered to muddy their hands by going anywhere near their constituents.

  • Comment number 31.

    'Should MPs job share?'
    Of course; it would give them additional time to attend board meetings of even more companies than they do already.

  • Comment number 32.

    I think there are things that can be done without hiring more MPs. Firstly in a an age of digital communications all voting should be done over the internet with debates via webcams from the MPs homes in their consituencies. No need for second homes or expenses other than providing them with the computer equipment such as web cams etc, which can be returned if they are ousted. Of course this would involve major investment in our digital highways but that would benefit everyone not just MPs so is well worth doing (and the technology companies argue needs to happen anyway). Think of the cost savings and the fact the MP will live in their constituency (although by no means all MPs do this at the moment second home or otherwise) means they should be closer to the issues affecting them.
    Of course personally I think until we have annual parliaments voted by true proportional representation we will never have full democracy. Such a system means every vote counts and the parliament truly reflects the country it is representing, with annual elections meaning MPs have to work together for the country rather than trying to make themselves as rich as possible in their 5 year term. This would require a different (some would say more evolved) type of non-partisan politician that unfortunatly we just don't seem to have in this country.

  • Comment number 33.

    I assume they will get half the salary, half the benefits and no subsidized drink.
    ? ??

    Thought not !!

  • Comment number 34.

    What I would prefer to see is a significant (at least 25%) reduction in the number of MPs in the Westminster Parliament. With the majority of our legislation being dealt with in some way by the EU and the devolved assemblies handling domestic legislation within their respective provinces, there is no justification for the retention of the current (expensive) number of MPs in London. Furthermore, given our system of Cabinet government, based in No 10, supported by the Party Whips, MPs are increasingly becoming marginalised and their influence on affairs of State diminished. To set an example, Parliament itself must now make major savings if it is to have any chance of public support of other cutbacks in public expenditure.

  • Comment number 35.

    Ideas like this makes me tremble at the thought of what the elected MP is thinking. We already have over 600 MP's and Over 700 in the House of Lords for an Island that is smaller than California. We need less not more. Dont give the suggestion a thought.

  • Comment number 36.

    Job-sharing works fine in some positions, but it would not work for Parliament because when you go to vote, you choose an INDIVIDUAL to represent you. Not a team, not even a political party, but a PERSON.

  • Comment number 37.

    "9. At 1:30pm on 10 Sep 2010, Beige Rage wrote:

    BBC, I would like to correct your news report above that says :

    "Ms Lucas became the Green Party's first MP at the last general election but the party's share was less than that of UKIP and the British National Party"

    She didn't get a smaller share of the vote in the constituency which she won."

    The BBC didn't say it was. It said the "party's share was less than that of UKIP and the BNP." Which it was. Ms Lucas' wasn't, as you rightly say, in her constituency. But the green party (as it says in the article) did get less votes then the other two party's.

    I unfortunately live in Lucas' constituency and feel this idea is just a pointless attention grabbing suggestion. One of many from the greens.

    What happens if the two job sharers differ in opinion when voting on policy? How can we be sure what we are voting in even if the pair say they agree on matters at the time of election? People very rarely agree on all aspects of policy within parties, so how do we know where the pair stand when we cast our vote?

    I think it's a stupid idea.

  • Comment number 38.

    Not under the current system. However in a proportional representation system this could work because this type of system means you're voting for a party rather than the person.

  • Comment number 39.

    Also, as an MP I don't see how she represents me. She doesn't even live n the city she "represents" and myself and a couple of others I know have sent emails to her on a few occasions with no reply at all. Waste of space.

  • Comment number 40.

    So that's why they are called 'green'.
    What a load of childish nonsense.
    What a waste of a parliamentary seat.

  • Comment number 41.

    Sounds like a step towards multi-member constituencies voted for using a proportional voting system. In which case I'm all for it.

  • Comment number 42.

    Delighted to see this idea gaining momentum, but it certainly isn't an example of the Greens being at "the cutting edge of new ideas". I proposed job-share MPs in a speech to Lib Dem party Conference a year ago, and again in an interview on BBC Radio 4 Woman's Hour last February...!

  • Comment number 43.

    Nevermind job sharing,a country this size dosent need all those MPs especially now most of are laws are dictated to us by Brussels and Strasbourg.

  • Comment number 44.

    A graphic illustration of why the Greens really shouldn't be allowed anywhere near Parliament. I think she did well not to laugh out loud when making her 'cutting edge of new ideas' comment!

    It really annoys me the way certain women MPs keep harping on about having more women in Parliament. Looking at the ones currently in the House of Commons, I'd have to say most of them give women a bad name. Personally, I'd rather have the most appropriate, best-qualified person doing the job regardless of gender.

    (No need to get narky with me; I'm just a woman who'd rather be assessed on my ability, rather than be given a job because of some arbitrary quota system.)

  • Comment number 45.

    Isnt this happening already? Clegg and Cameron? Clegg to be pesent in parliament when the s**** realy hits the fan

  • Comment number 46.

    Drivel total and utter drivel, if you aren't capable of doing the job then i suggest you quit.

  • Comment number 47.

    No....full commitment or nothing with maximum tenure of 8 years...thats it no sharing....

  • Comment number 48.

    Absolutely one the stupidest suggestions to make when we are talking about saving money. Job sharing would only increase the number of politicians and subsequent "golden handshake" payments and pensions.

    We would all like to see more women in Parliament but an MP should be able to commit 100%. It would also create numerous problems because two people, of the same party, do not necessarily share exactly the same views. What if one of them refused to take their party's whip on the Wednesday only for their partner to accept it on the Thursday. What if you basically ended up with two parliaments Mon-Wed and Wed-Fri?

    What if good candidates for parliament were excluded because the electorate did not like the other candidate?

  • Comment number 49.

    A very good idea.

    Ms Lucas shows that a Pluralistic Parliament with independents and members of smaller parties can be a source of innovation of our Democracy.

  • Comment number 50.

    No. What's required a large multi-member constituencies with proportional representation so that most voters have the choice of dealing with an MP who has similar political concerns.

    It's only in fairly recent years that MPs have been seen as "overpaid social workers". I want them to go back to dealing with national issues not Mrs Smith's rent problems or complaints about overgrown hedges.

  • Comment number 51.

    "13. At 1:40pm on 10 Sep 2010, jimbob_kite wrote:
    An excellent proposal. I have said to my friends a few times that we should have 2 MP's for each constituency, with one remaining PERMANENTLY within the constituency and one remaining in London. They could swap about every year or so. And they could share the wages. Any who didn't like those conditions can go and do something else."

    I think there's something to this idea...

    The main gripe with people in the constituency where I live is that the MP is relatively senior within his party and is almost never around! Having a second point of contact would greatly ease this problem.

    Provided the burden to the taxpayer is controlled (i.e. expenses cap shared and salary split) then I wouldn't have a problem.

    MPs often complain about long hours, so with two heads I'm sure they'll cope with the workload much more easily. Maybe they won't be so tired, which might mean sensible and well thought out legislation. On the other hand...

  • Comment number 52.

    Double the complexities, time to get things done, chances of disagreement, finger pointing for half the responsibility and salary.

    What a shame. I'm quite saddened to hear this from the Green party. The last thing this country needs is more half-hearted MPs.

    We need decision makers, doers, leaders and listeners (but not single minded, arrogant, brash, bullies who think everyone else is wrong)

  • Comment number 53.

    NO no no no....

    For the time being, we are ok with the conservatives....we don't want the same sex partners walking into 10 Downing street as Two-in-One PM.

  • Comment number 54.

    "On Friday she told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that it was just the latest example of the Green Party being at the 'cutting edge of new ideas'."


    Mmm....'cutting edge of new ideas', or still coming up with crack-pot ideas that have not been thought through?

    How will these MP's vote in the House if they disagree? Is she suggesting double the number of MPs realising that that will be double the number of expense claims (for the same representation of the public)?
    How many constituencies were not 'open' to women at the last election, none! How will it engender stronger ties to the community, if they are part-time they are presumably not working half the week (being a parent or carer possibly?) so will propably spend proportionately more of their working week at Westminster.

    If her 'job share' idea is all aimed at MPs being able to be in "two places at once" (one in the constiuency and one in the House) then perhaps she should have suggested some sort of technology solution first - video conferencing, electronic voting by MPs etc.

    I used to wonder what Greens did when they weren't saving whales and promoting veganism, now I know - they brainstorm this type of nonsense.

  • Comment number 55.

    "#20. At 1:53pm on 10 Sep 2010, RitaKleppmann wrote:
    I can´t think of anything more inefficient."

    How about 365 MPs for each constituency, one for every day of the year?!
    Just think of how strong their 'ties to the constituency' would be!!

  • Comment number 56.

    In 12. At 1:38pm on 10 Sep 2010, afreethinker wrote:

    What a load of cods wallop..why should we women expect others to change the way parliament and the Country are governed just to get women into parliament..if they want to become an MP then they know the job description before they even apply.

    Maybe she should be asking advice of Lady Thatcher. Indeed Lucas is old enough to have voted in the 1979 general election.

  • Comment number 57.

    Is this not interesting insight into the green party way of thinking?

    The Green party is all about cutting back on waste and not using more than you need and doing things more efficiently, yet here we are suggesting that two people to do the work that clearly one does now.

    Very green cutting edge comment; Not!!

  • Comment number 58.

    No, utter nonsense. It's bad enough having 1 local MP who doesn't listen, never mind 2!

  • Comment number 59.

    I'd rather see parliamentary reform whereby MPs act as representatives of their constituents, as opposed to the system we have now where MPs act as representatives of their political parties and largely ignore the wishes of the electorate.

    If we could also reform the House of Lords so that each Lord would also be elected by a parliamentary constituency and then share the constituency responsibilities between the MP and Lord then constituents would have two elected officials representing their local and national needs.

    This would require the destruction of our political parties and the democratisation of our system of government but both are quite appealing prospects to me so it’s a win-win from my perspective.

  • Comment number 60.

    #44 Mrs. Vee - absolutely agree with you.

    It seems to me that parliament started to go downhill when Blair and his 'women only shortlist' babes moved into No. 10 and started campaigning for family friendly hours, breastfeeding in the chamber etc. Like Mrs. Vee I want the best, most serious and busnesslike, candidates for the job not designer dressed babes whose 2nd homes must have 'wow' factor on expenses.

  • Comment number 61.

    OOh, what a good idea. TWICE as many MP's expenses!!

  • Comment number 62.

    In 3. At 11:01pm on 09 Sep 2010, devilzadvacate1 wrote:

    I just hope that those watching events from either side of the religious divide can understand that Terry Jones, whose congregation is only 50 people in total does not represent the general view of the other 300 million Americans or the views of billions of Christians worldwide,

    IIRC He was previously evicted from a German church so it looks like plenty of Christians don't agree with him. It's unclear how many of these 50 people actually support him anyway.

  • Comment number 63.

    It seems a stupid idea. You would assume it would cost more money, at the very least in expenses. What happens if I liked one of the candidates but loathed the other?

  • Comment number 64.

    7. At 2:11pm on 10 Sep 2010, David Horton wrote: Ridiculous halfbaked idea from a ridiculous half baked party.

    Lol that's what I was going to write. Well said.

  • Comment number 65.

    Whatever next.

    This is the problem with single policy parties, they have a central plank that unites people around them and then the rest of their policies are just barking.

    Usually it's bad enough we have one MP in a constituancy, there are plenty I can think of I would not want representating me, and then I may get two.

    Although maybe instead of having Balls and Cooper in adjacent constituancies, they could share. At least it would cut their expenses after the shenanigans of late.

    As usual its some politically correct rubbish behind it. In this case getting more woman into parliament. That drum has been beating since 1997 and it has lead to a lot of dross being our political representatives because of all woman short lists etc. Contrast that with Diane Abbott; I dislike her poltics, but I admire her as is a proper politician. She is in parliament because she wants to be, not because they cleared the path for her.

    What next, sharing with an asylum seeker or maybe a murderer. That way we will have representation to understand the so called dispossed or an expert on the failings of the justice system.

    For a party that defends the indefendable, this global warming tax con of majore governments, this is just another stupid policy.

    Well done Brighton, you elected a lemon.

  • Comment number 66.

    16. At 1:45pm on 10 Sep 2010, knownought wrote:
    Whilst I share none of the political views of Caroline Lucas, I do think this is a very good idea. As long as it remains voluntary and does not become compulsary it SHOULD bring the best of two minds to Parliament. The danger of course is that it MAY bring the worst of two minds to our legislation process.


    The obvious problem would be that when there was a free vote, which one would vote? They could easily have different views on a non political issue. The other problem of course is what happens if they fall out.

  • Comment number 67.

    45. At 2:53pm on 10 Sep 2010, mintman60 wrote:

    Isnt this happening already? Clegg and Cameron? Clegg to be pesent in parliament when the s**** realy hits the fan


    This comment is utterly disgraceful. I am not fan of the Liberal Democrat faction of the Conservative Party Leader, David Cameron. But a little bit of compassion would not go amiss, the man has lost his father this week.

    As I come from a stable family background I can understand what he is going through.

    But then thats what happens when you promote societies where Mom met Dad over 10 of laager and then never saw him again.

  • Comment number 68.

    "khan wrote:
    NO no no no....
    For the time being, we are ok with the conservatives....we don't want the same sex partners walking into 10 Downing street as Two-in-One PM."

    I don't understand the whole of your post, but bits of it seem a very nice idea :-)

  • Comment number 69.

    I suppose it is OK for MPs and would very likely entail double expenses.
    However, job sharing in the real world often means that an employer gets two workers for the price of one. But each one ends up doing 100%. So that is double the work.

  • Comment number 70.

    The tricky bit is that MP’s are not so much paid for the amount of work they do, as for the opinions they provide. Strictly speaking each MP is required to provide one opinion (no more, no less) on each issue that requires a decision in Parliament.

    It is no doubt feasible for two job-sharers to share the workload of one MP. But it is harder to find two people who agree on each and every issue, and are happy to let the other person vote on their behalf.

    I am sure that there are ways to iron that out, so I am not against job-sharing MPs. It is definitely worth a try. But the practice has to come with very clear rules.

  • Comment number 71.

    Should MPs job share?

    Yes, maybe one could get rid of the trash that the other brings in!!!

  • Comment number 72.

    NO a thousand times NO.
    How would voters manage to decide between pairings? You might like one of a pair and loathe the other; even if you liked them all how can you choose whether taken together pair A would be better than pair B? or pairs C, D, and E?. How would they deal with constituents - what if you take your problem to one and then find the 'duty MP' knows nothing about it when the problem's intensified and you need quick help? (Worse than the NHS hospitals, where you never see the same doctor twice running). And does two MPs mean two sets of expenses?
    What happens when the PM is making up the Government and wants one of them but not the other? Does s/he have to choose the pair? If not, can they both be in the Chamber at the same time, one as a Minister and one as a constituency MP? And how in this situation would you organise the voting in Parliamentary divisions, as between the Minister and non-Minister?
    I usually hate condemning new ideas, as today's potty suggestion can very quickly turn into tomorrow's common sense, but this is the sloppiest piece of thinking I've heard in a long time. A shame, because in most other things I'd vote for the Greens if they put up a good candidate in my everlastingly Tory constituency.
    But being an MP is about service to the public, not about engineering the gender balance of the nation's legislature.

  • Comment number 73.

    No they should not share it will probably just be a case of double the salary and expenses, they should all be in Parliament at least four full days a week, many are hardly there, Gordon Brown hardly puts in an appearance since he lost, he should write his book in his own time not
    at our expense.

  • Comment number 74.

    Yes, 500 of them are completely superfluous so why not get them to sweep the streets or something? With what they get paid for doing nothing they should do it for free as well.

    And yes, I have treated the question with the contempt it deserves. How much is the taxpayer paying this particular fool to come out with twaddle like this?

  • Comment number 75.

    Tinkering with the corrupt and unfair UK Parliamentary system does not make it right.
    Get rid of the gang at Westminster and FPTP, and let us, the citizens of the UK vote for who we want, and not what the parties tell us we have to choose from. Then - and this is really radical - let those elected represent the views of their constituents.
    Only then will the UK have a truly representative Parliament.

  • Comment number 76.

    This is one of the most idiotic suggesting I have ever heard of.

    This woman should join the Monster Raving Looney's

    No I take that back, Monster Raving Loonies have actually had policy suggestions implemented by various Governments, this suggestion is not even fit for considering by the Lunatic Fringe....

  • Comment number 77.

    What happens when the two MPs find themselves disagreeing over a policy?
    How do they decide who gets to vote?


  • Comment number 78.

    Prior to the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885 most Parliamentary seats had two members. Some two member seats survived until after the Second World War.

    Whether or not Ms Lucas' idea would work in this day and age is debatable. But the suggestion that this is something new or outwith the British Parliamentary tradition is rubbish.

  • Comment number 79.

    Ridiculous, for several reasons.

    We already have more legislators than the USA and yet a fifth of their population. The last thing we need to do is bloat the Commons with more frankly underwhelming public servants.

    Why should we incentivise MP's to give less dedication to their roles as lawmakers? Ms. Lucas seems to be confusing the job description with council level officials and community/social workers. I personally believe an MP should be primarily be representing his constituency IN government, not micro-managing.

    How would Ms. Lucas' plan help attract expertise to politics? There is already a noticeable shortage of brilliance present and with twice the number of MP's we could likely only afford half of that.. a grim prospect. Sadly, the trend usually goes the better the pay, the better the applicants, but Ms. Lucas portrays that singular quality of left wing politics in her obliviousness to that little niggle called the deficit.

    We need fewer, more dedicated and better people in government, somewhat the opposite of what she is espousing. Another fail for the Greens.

  • Comment number 80.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 81.

    Seems like a job creation scheme to me.

  • Comment number 82.

    Caroline Lucas became an MP more for her Gay Manifesto, than any environmental considerations. Brighton Pavilion was specifically and cynically targeted as her only real chance of a parliamentary seat.
    A veteran of CND and Greenham Common, she's an upmarket and highly-polished member of rent-a-crowd, but scratch her surface and the alternative feminist agitator is revealed.

  • Comment number 83.

    Providing it doesn't cost any more than the present system and all those involved agree to represent their constituents rather than some political party (they do the opposite at the moment) then there should be no difficulty. A particularly sensible option would be to elect a married couple.

  • Comment number 84.

    What, two lots of expenses for one seat? Sounds good to me.

  • Comment number 85.

    18. At 1:47pm on 10 Sep 2010, kaybraes wrote:
    This woman and her party are a waste of space. Their policies like the majority of their members would be best locked away in a dustbin.

    These kind of comments are totally unnecessary,would it not be nicer if you had some manners.Good job she is not a Catholic to boot.

  • Comment number 86.

    if , like the other greens, she was remotely in touch with the real world, i might listen to her.

  • Comment number 87.

    Not a very good idea. Most MP's live in cloud cuckoo land. Getting rid of some of the lazy bones would be a better idea.

    Actually, thinking about it, I can see a point. The one who is not working in parliament would get the state pension! I'd give long odds that they swiftly vote to reform it!

  • Comment number 88.

    Sweet Caroline, "LOOK US" in the eye and say your serious.

  • Comment number 89.

    Its an interesting idea that might have some merit if we moved to a proportional representation system although its not clear how the practicalities would work.

    The only electoral reform the Tories are interested at the moment though is gerrymandering constituencies whilst the Lib Dems have sold their soul for a half-baked referendum on AV.

  • Comment number 90.

    And the Green party in the UK wonders why it so less successful than those in other European countries.

  • Comment number 91.

    There's nothing green about paying two for one!

  • Comment number 92.

    Did Caroline Lucas swim and walk to the University of Kansas when she studied there?

    Or is it just the rest of us that cannot travel on aircraft and use cars on roads.

  • Comment number 93.

    What a brilliant idea.Create an never ending surplus of MPs.Nice Salary to be earned.Unlimited expenses to be claimed.
    And,a much reduced work load.A beautiful Pension Plan to look forward to.

    Wonder who is really stupid?

    Our Politicians? Or people who believe them?
    Or a National Media,too scared to expose very stupid Politicians,for being exactly what they are?
    A Politician is a person who places his/her own interests first.

    Difficult to blame them.Good Salary.Terrific Expense Claims,Wonderful Pension.
    Not too much different from our Investment Bankers.
    To date,no Investment Banker,or one single Politician lives in poverty.
    How many UK Taxpayers will it take to keep the Status Quo?

  • Comment number 94.

    In other words: Lucas has had her 15mins of fame being the first green mp, but has now gotten bored and wants to officially give the job to one of her underlings while trying to claim credit and maintain voting in parliament.

  • Comment number 95.

    What happens with their expenses? I'm sure they wouldn't share them. If they both live well away from London they will both need accommodation close to London. Suppose they have differing views on some issues - which one did you vote for?

    You silly, silly woman - how can you damage your party further?

  • Comment number 96.

    "With the majority of our legislation being dealt with in some way by the EU"


  • Comment number 97.

    The 'MP's' we have can't work out how they were elected, why they were elected or what they're supposed to do now. The CONservatives don't want any change, the Lib Dums do according to their election manefesto's. Oh I forgot they both threw them away to grab power!
    So no, I don't think any sort of change is on the cards.

  • Comment number 98.

    I have just had 25 pints of laager and 14 whiskey chasers, so I am in an inspiration mood now.

    How about we get 10 votes each of 10% of a vote on our ballot paper and then the top three get to share the constituany.

    So a ballot paper could look like this

    Constituancy: Barkingmad Central, West, East, South, North and South West

    Pickles, Prescott (Conservative)
    Darjaarling, Alice Tear (Labour)
    Blair, Anthony (Independant)
    Wills, Davina (Liberated Dimwit)
    Barrage, Nigel (UKIP)
    Burns-Kleen, Diesel (Green)
    Marx, Karl (English Socialist Party)
    Beckham, David (FIFA)
    Spaace, Phil (Supermarket Collective)
    Archee, Anne (Cut the Bill Party)
    Mitchell, Peggy (E15 Queen Vic)
    Bush, George W (Vote for Blair Alliance)

    You then give them as much or as little of your vote as you want. So in this instance I will give Beckham 50%, Pickles 20% and 10% for Mitchell, Burns-Kleen and Spaace.

    Barking, no more than Caroline Lucas's. In fact mine has had more thought put into it.

    Hic, I'll go back to the boozer now.

  • Comment number 99.

    We've been told "we are all in this together"
    So when are the MPs, Bussinesmen and Bankers going to join the rest of us in the ecomomic pain?

  • Comment number 100.

    Another silly idea from the Green Party, it would mean twice as many MP's as at present. We need to halve the number of MP's in the UK as most of their job is now done by the EU. In these days of digital information technology there is less need for so many representatives as communication can be by email. All private sector businesses expect to reduce their staffing levels every year for the same amount of work done due to efficiency gains, a concept totally alien to the Public sector employees and managers.


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