Removal of bishops from the House of Lords

By Press Office
July 12, 2009

Commenting on a report in the Mail on Sunday that Bishops may lose voting rights in a reformed House of Lords, Ekklesia co-director Jonathan Bartley said:

"The proposal that any places should be reserved in Parliament, with or without voting rights, for men (and they must be men) appointed by an undemocratic, external religious institution, is untenable.

"In the House of Commons, through the existing democratic system those with religious convictions are over-represented. The argument advanced by the Church that the removal of bishops from the House of Lords would maginalise Christanity from public life has no credibility and simply isn't born out by the facts.

"Bishops could, and indeed should, stand for election to a reformed Second Chamber just like everyone else. They could do so alongside those of other Christian denominations, those of other religions and those of no religion.

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