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Lords criticise use of delegated powers

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The House of Lords constitution committee has called the government’s increased use of delegated powers through secondary legislation ‘constitutionally objectionable’.

In its latest report on the legislative process, the constitution committee said that the government should not seek broad or vague powers simply for convenience or flexibility and must provide a compelling justification for all delegated powers. If the government does not do so, the committee recommends that Parliament use its powers to block such instruments.

As the report puts it: ‘the established constitutional restraint shown by the House of Lords towards secondary legislation may not be sustained’.