Third Way has long advocated the introduction of Recall – the power to sack elected officials. We also support the introduction of initiative and referendum. These are the building blocks of direct democracy. Wikipedia defines a recall election in this way:
“A recall election (also called a recall referendum or representative recall) is a procedure by which voters can remove an elected official from office through a direct vote before his or her term has ended. Recalls, which are initiated when sufficient voters sign a petition, have a history dating back to the ancient Athenian democracy and are a feature of several contemporary constitutions.”
So Third Way is delighted to promote the latest 38 degrees campaign (received by us a two days ago). We republish their message below and urge you to sign their petition.
“It’s splashed across The Telegraph today: a group of MPs have come together to say that they need to regain our trust. And they’re right. Many of us think that politics in the UK is broken. MPs can be sent to prison, can fiddle their expenses or break their promises and we can only get rid of them on election day. But, we’ve got a chance right now to make things better. It looks like the government is making plans to announce new powers to sack – ‘recall’ – MPs who don’t do their job properly. Good huh? It would be, but it’s a stitch-up. Their plans could put the power to sack MPs in their colleagues’ hands – not their constituents. The MPs speaking out today don’t think this is good enough. They’re backing real recall – so if enough people wanted to hold a by-election to sack their MP in between elections, they could. Today’s news will put the government under pressure. So let’s add to it. Let’s build a HUGE people-powered petition so they know we’re watching. Can you sign the petition now?
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/recall-2014 A real recall law is not the answer to all of our democracy’s problems. But it’s a step in the right direction. And above all, it puts the power into our hands rather than MPs’. Real recall won’t mean that by-elections happen every day. There would be checks and balances in place so that MPs can get on with their jobs. It’s only the bad MPs who will need to worry. We need to send the government a clear signal, which means the petition needs to be big. Every signature will build the pressure they’ll be under. Here’s what one Conservative MP, Zac Goldsmith said: “As an MP, I’ve seen how public pressure can force the government’s arm – and they’re particularly sensitive about public trust in MPs right now. A massive petition could give David Cameron and Nick Clegg no option but to go back to the drawing board – and produce recall with bite.” Please sign the petition now: https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/recall-2014“
For those interested in learning more about direct democracy please see http://thirdway.info/2008/02/25/direct-democracy-a-review-of-a-vital-new-book/