An exclusive BMG poll commissioned by the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) has revealed almost two thirds (63%) of the public want to see a wholly or partially elected House of Lords. While only 10% support a continuation of the status quo in the upper chamber. The polling also showed that 27% of those asked, would like to see the House of Lords abolished altogether.
The poll, coincides with the publication of a report by the Lord Speaker’s Committee that has made several recommendations for reform to the House of Lords. Among the suggestions were reducing the number of representatives from 799 to 600, introducing 15-year term limits and appointing peers by party, based on an average of the vote share at the last election and the total number of Commons seats won.
The poll shows that support for either a partially or entirely elected House of Lords was highest among those of a higher socio-economic background (Grade AB = 72%). Comparatively, those from lower socio-economic backgrounds were not only less likely to back this measure (Grade DE = 56%) but also far more likely to say they would prefer it if the House of Lords was abolished, closing its doors permanently. (Grade DE = 34% to Grade AB 21%).
Interestingly, those who are non- voters are likely to want to see dramatic changes to the structure of the House of Lords. While 41% of non-voters would like to see an entirely elected chamber, 41% of non-voters would actually prefer to see the House of Lords abolished entirely.
Participants were also asked if ‘the UK parliament is capable of understanding and effectively representing the concerns of people like me’. While 30% of people agreed with the statement, 44% disagreed feeling that they are not properly understood or represented in the current system.
A closer look at the data also reveals that those from a higher socio-economic background (Social Grade AB) are more likely to agree with this statement compared to those from a lower socio-economic background (DE = 22%).
Overall the data suggests that the majority of Britons support a change in the current structure of British House of Lords.
The original press release that reported on these results by the Electoral Reform Society can be found here.
Methodology, fieldwork dates, and a full breakdown of these results can be found here.
For a more detailed breakdown of results from this poll, or any other results from our polling series, please get in touch by email or phone.
0121 333 6006
Ciaran McGlone – Research Executive