With everything else in the modern world changing rapidly, 60Months believes there must be ways to update the UK’s political system to make it work better for the 21st century.  Here are 12 ideas to get the conversation going – in no particular order:

  1. Why don’t we allow 16 year olds to vote?  They can vote in Scottish elections.  They can marry.  They can join the army.  People with dementia can vote!

  2. Why do we use a voting system that produces such unbalanced outcomes?  And which means the smaller parties are so under-represented in parliament?  For example, at the 2017 election 525,371 people voted for the Green Party, which resulted in one Green party MP being elected.  Yet, only 292,316 people voted for the Democratic Unionist Party, gaining them 10 MPs, and they are now in coalition with the Conservatives, and will benefit from lots of new money for Northern Ireland!

  3. There are 92 hereditary peers in the House of Lords.  Is it right to allow people to have a say in running the country just because they were born to a title?

  4. The Prime Minister has an audience with the Queen each week.  Is this really a good use of her time?

  5. Many politicians have never worked anywhere other than Westminster.  Do they possess the right skills to run a country?  Should we require politicians to have worked outside politics for a minimum period to give them some experience of the real world?

  6. Maybe there should be time limits imposed on MPs, to stop them trying to hang onto their seat at all cost; and to keep bringing new people into politics?  Should being an MP be seen as a privilege as much as a career?

  7. Why haven’t we experimented with new forms of voting to encourage greater participation?  Many other countries allow online voting.  Should we trial it in the UK?

  8. Prime Minister’s Question Time officially is a chance for MPs to question the Prime Minister. It seems to have become an opportunity for the two major parties to score points.  It’s unclear what constructive benefit it offers the country.  Should it be reformed or scrapped?

  9. The House of Commons is set up as a confrontational debating chamber.  Would we get more constructive politics if the politicians sat in a ring or semi-circle as adopted by the more recently constructed National Assembly buildings?

  10. Should being a constituency MP be a full-time job?  For example, some take on lots of other outside roles; others take on the colossal workload that comes with a ministerial position.  Should we be clearer about what is expected from constituency MPs?

  11. The UK is one of the least devolved countries in Europe, with spending tightly controlled by central government in London, which naturally has lower knowledge of regional issues.  Is this balance right?  With the resurgence of all the UK’s provincial cities in the last 20 years, should they be given more control over local taxes and spending?

  12. In some areas of policy, in reality, both major parties largely agree on what needs to happen, but they rarely work together, and seem to endlessly find ways to disagree and sow seeds of discord.  Should we explore ways in which they are encouraged to work more collectively to deal more efficiently with particular challenges?  Perhaps we should start by not labelling the leader of the second party in government as the ‘Leader of the Opposition’?

Please let us know of other issues you can think of.

If you want to help make the case to update politics for the 21st century, please sign up at 60Months.uk.