While looking through the report on the Coalition’s first anniversary from the non-job holders at the so-called Taxpayers’ Alliance (TPA) yesterday, I noticed that there was an item on “elected police commissioners”. On this, the TPA had awarded the Government full marks, as they “appear to be on track”.
It is not surprising that the TPA should take this stance: their view was set out by Mark Wallace back in May last year in a post on ConservativeHome, although the idea has not been universally welcomed. Not that you would know that from Wallace’s own blog, where in characteristic TPA style he denounces police authorities as “unaccountable, unelected and failed”. Bit like the TPA, then.
But sadly for the TPA’s ambition, and its verdict yesterday, the proposal for elected police commissioners was brought to a halt in the House Of Lords very soon after the TPA had published. Moreover, it was peers from a party that is part of the Coalition – the Lib Dems – who made the difference.On top of that, three former Metropolitan Police commissioners joined the vote against elected commissioners. With this kind of influence, perhaps the TPA can be persuaded to back more of its favourites with the same enthusiasm.