A year ahead for our Parliament and a possible Election

At the beginning of a new year many of us consider what will take place with a range of themes and settings that impact us personally or within our community or indeed across the whole of our Nation. One of the contexts that some of us include is what will be taking place in Parliament and indeed how our local MPs will participate in this new year. Although there is no Parliamentary activity today because it is a bank holiday there may be some themes that will emerge this week from within the Government in the next few days and then next week Parliament will open up formally for all of our MPs to take part. One of the themes that was being discussed significantly last year was when the next General Election will emerge. Given that Theresa May and Boris Johnson both called for a General Election to emerge in less of a year following their selection as the Prime Minister for the Conservative Party, it seems potential that Rishi Sunak may well call for a General Election this year. In any case he will certainly need to announce an Election in less than two years from today and so his decision will need to be considered relatively soon. Many of us would expect that the General Election should take place at the same time as the local Elections which take place in May each year so we could expect a General Election this May or next May.

One of the themes that is being considered by many people in Sussex is what results will be achieved at the next General Election and how many of the current 16 Sussex constituencies will emerge with Conservative MPs and how much support can be obtained from joint work by the other political groups to improve the prospect of alternatives. There are several locations that have enabled Labour or Liberal Democratic MPs in the past in this area. The Hastings and Crawley constituencies have both had Labour MPs in the past and Eastbourne and Lewes have both had Liberal Democratic MPs in the past. There has also been very hard work carried out in Worthing in the past to try to obtain a Labour MP although so far the Conservative Party has been dominated. It will be very interesting to see what does occur at the next General Election and what the number of MPs from the different political groups in our area will emerge. Of course, along with the activity that will emerge in preparation for the General Election we also need the next Government to adopt a Proportional Representation system for the future. There are people in every constituency that would like an MP that represents their political views but this is particularly strong in locations that are restricted to a standard party. I have met a number of people in places such as Chichester, Wealden, Littlehampton and Mid Sussex who would like them to be able to obtain an MP who represents them. I have also met a number of people who would like the opportunity to be able to achieve Independent MPs  who they have supported in previous elections. That of course will be much more challenging than proportional representation can achieve but it is a theme for many of us to consider.

Clearly there are currently some very long-term MPs located in Sussex and so it will be interesting if the next General Election may change one or more of them. Peter Bottomley who represents Worthing West is currently the Father of the House of Commons and this year he will have been an MP for 48 years. There are also two other MPs, both of which are also in West Sussex who this year will have been MPs for 26 years. They are Nick Gibb from Bognor Regis and Littlehampton and Tim Loughton from East Worthing.  

For those of us who are more focused on what will take place in Parliament in the next few days we can read that on next Monday in the first day of Parliament for 2023 that there is a debate that is planned for “Supported Housing (Regulatory Oversight) Bill” with a focus on the Money Resolution being managed by Victoria Atkins. Later on in the same day there is a session entitled “Levelling Up, Housing and Communities” so we can hope that our local MPs will participate in both of those sessions. Indeed, we could contact our MPs this week to take part in both of these debates. Also a week on Wednesday Caroline Lucas from Brighton Pavilion is holding a debate on the theme of “Fossil fuels and increases in the cost of living” so let us hope that the other Sussex MPs will participate in that next week.

About ianchisnall

I am passionate about the need for public policies to be made accessible to everyone, especially those who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am particularly interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as health services and strategic planning.
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