THERE is something seriously amiss when, the UK, with a population of 67million has 650 seats in the House of Commons and now more than 800 in the House of Lords – compared with the USA which, with a population five times greater than ours, has just 435 seats in Congress and a mere 100 in the Senate. While India with a population of 1.35 billion has 790 seats in the Lok Sabha (lower house) and 250 in the Rajya Sabha (upper house).

And even France (of whom President De Gaulle once famously remarked “How can you govern a country that has 247 types of cheese?”) with a population very similar in size to ours, has 571 Deputies in its Assembly Nationale and a mere 100 Senators in its upper chamber (Senat).

The House of Lords has become little more than a farce – a means by which political leaders can buy-off or ‘reward’ their cronies and benefactors – and silence some of their critics.

It does not need ‘reforming’ or cutting down to size – it needs to be abolished altogether and replaced with an upper house of just 200 or so members.