Watching the Watchmen: The Growing Case for Recall Elections and Increased Accountability for MPs by Sam Goodman


This report argues that there is an urgent case for updating the 2015 Recall Act to allow constituents to recall Members of Parliament as part of a package of wider democratic reforms. The author holds that Recall is not a magical solution to the current crisis, but could be a useful democratic lever and an effective deterrent against corruption. Any proposed extension would be underpinned by a sound principle, namely: if voters can be trusted to elect Members of Parliament at a General Election without bias, prejudice, or the inducement of monetary gain, then they can be trusted to judge if and when their elected representatives deserve to be recalled. The report concludes that, in an age where much of parliamentary legislation and business is taken up with the passing of new regulations on key industries, the professions, and sectors of the economy in an attempt to break the strangle-hold of self-regulation, MPs cannot remain exempt without facing the charge of hypocrisy.

This publication presents the personal views of the author and not those of The Constitution Society, which publishes it as a contribution to debate on this important subject.