15 Pages


ByEmma Crewe

This chapter discusses the constituency work, specifically the interaction between MPs and meeting constituents. The influence of constituents on MPs grows, and the clout of Select Committees swells, in parallel with a decline in the power of the whips. Cross-party alliances are becoming more common, and the most significant secret at the heart of Parliament is that political work is less antagonistic than it appears. The story of the Sensibles, Conservative rebels who defied the whip to defeat the House of Lords bill 2012–13, illustrates how backbenchers in this Parliament continue to be in their new feisty mode. The government changed the wording as a result of persuasive arguments by the Justice Select Committee and the House of Lords in conversation with outsiders. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.