Q1. What is the purpose of a citizens' convention on the constitution?

PE Phil England Public Seen by 339


We have been examining this question through a series of public events and a survey. We are doing this to help build a shared vision among democracy campaigners so that we can:
a) engage with the Trickett/King's initiative and campaign to make it have a better public interest outcome and
b) design and initiate our own process if the King's/Trickett proposal turns out to be insufficient.

We are moving this discussion to Loomio for a limited time in order to bring this discussion to a conclusion and see if there are any unifying statements we can agree on. These will then be put forward to the next convention planning group meeting on 11 September for possible adoption.

You are invited to propose unifying statements (using the green button at the top right-hand of the page) drawing on our work to date (see below) to see what support they receive from other participants. You can also comment on, discuss and vote on proposals that others have made. Those statements receiving the most support will be considered for adoption at the meeting of the next convention planning group on 11 September.

Work so far on this question:

i) Below are popular responses from the survey we conducted after the public meeting at the House of Commons on 10 May.

The purpose of a citizens' convention on the constitution is to:

• Draft a new constitution and/or
• Fix our broken politics

ii) Below are the results of the temperature check of statements suggested at the end of our day of deliberation on 16 July 2106.

The purpose of a citizens' convention on the constitution is to:

• Determine principles, processes and institutions to reflect the will/sovereignty of the people (94%)
• Reconceptualise the state and propose modern forms of democracy for 21stcentury (91%)
• Draft a written constitution that could command a qualified majority of support (87%)
• Enshrine and legalise the transfer of economic and political power from the minority to the majority (84%)
• Educate about what is problematic with current constitution – political education is needed in order for it to be successful (82%)
• Overcome the undemocratic aspects of the system (82%)
• Generate policy to be included in mainstream party manifestos (56%)
• It should open up questions like who controls the money system (55%)


Andy Paice Sun 28 Aug 2016 10:08PM

Thanks for this Phil.
I need to clarify what we're being invited to do. Come up with a unifying statement that encapsulates the statements above? Is that right?


Phil England Sun 28 Aug 2016 11:08PM

A unifying statement, I think, would be something we can all agree on. This might involve tweaking or combining existing statements. Statements with over 90% support in the temperature check seem like strong contenders. Why didn't they get 100%?


Poll Created Mon 29 Aug 2016 8:44AM

The purpose is to determine principles, processes and institutions to reflect the will/sovereignty of the people. Closed Fri 9 Sep 2016 8:02AM

I am restating this principle because it received near unanimous support. (One person may have given it 4/5 resonance rather than 5!)
From my point of view it succinctly sums up the essence of a convention's purpose.


Results Option % of points Voters
Agree 100.0% 3 PF RG CB
Abstain 0.0% 0  
Disagree 0.0% 0  
Block 0.0% 0  

3 of 20 people have participated (15%)


Paul Feldman
Tue 6 Sep 2016 11:05AM

This is putting our principle into practice


Chris Brody
Tue 6 Sep 2016 10:20PM

I would reword the proposal slightly but am inclined to agree.


Phil England Fri 2 Sep 2016 8:45PM

I looked back at my temperature check submission and it turns out that I was one of the people (perhaps the only person?) who rated this 4 out of 5 in the temperature check! Why did I not give it my whole-hearted endorsement? I think it is because I would prefer a statement that talks about creating a system that is "designed to operate in the public interest" rather than one that reflects "the will/sovereignty of the people." That's my gut feeling. It would require some thought to lay out my reasoning.


Paul Feldman Tue 6 Sep 2016 11:08AM

A convention should identify where power presently lies and how it is exercised through the state and propose new forms of democracy that transfer sovereignty to the people.