Tuesday, 6 April 2010
wash-up or spin cycle?
The usually hidden turbo button on the Parliamentary system has been revealed. It looks as if the remaining bills under consideration are all to be processed within the next 2-3 days before Parliament is dissolved.
Harriet Harman can preside over this last minute spin cycle as part of the so-called wash-up process. The bills make an interesting laundry list, with the bribery bill, financial services bill, developing countries debt relief bill and the equality bill for starters.
There's plenty of others too, and it raises all sorts of questions about the time these normally take, the number of ostensibly significant bills that have not been processed and what happens when they all get bundled through in a couple of days.
The one drawing a lot of internet attention has been the digital economy bill, which has had almost a whole day to itself and is being rushed through despite extensive lobbying requesting delays for various reviews.
I can't help wondering whether this bundling of bills will really engage MPs, because of the imminent dissolution and electioneering.
Quite a laundering operation.