When government works to rule

James Tate
2 min readJan 11


From our political correspondent

Voters are demanding drastic legislation to ensure the UK Government sticks to an agreed minimum service level. The move comes as the electorate grows weary of the sight of politicians working to rule while problems mount up around the country.

As queues of legislation grow ever longer and measures promised in election manifestos remain unactioned years after they were mooted, voters claim to be acting in the country’s interests in demanding the government provides a minimum level of service to fix the ‘backlog in governance’.

The planned legislation will require the government to commit to producing strategic plans for areas vital to the health of the country, such as healthcare, education and transport, and then enacting policies to support them while reporting on the results and modifying plans as necessary.

Voters claim this is how governments operate in other countries, which explains why their citizens can look forward to trains that run on time, hospitals that aren't overwhelmed and schools that aren’t crumbling into the ground. While unheard of in the UK, some countries’ governments also look further ahead than five years, dedicating parliamentary time to address challenges in the future.

It is understood that pointless private members’ bills, populist stunts and vanity projects would still be allowed under the new legislation, but the government would have to dedicate at least a certain amount of time to measures that might provide some benefit to the country.

“We’re not asking politicians to stop wasting time altogether,” said one voter, “but the sight of legislation piling up around Whitehall, waiting months if not years for attention, is horrifying. The UK’s political system is not fit for purpose at the precise time when the country faces significant hurdles.”

To ensure a chance of being passed, the minimum service level agreement will not address parliamentary behaviour, so would not set expectations around bullying or sexual predation. Nor will any attempt be made to set a minimum level of attendance in the House of Lords.

Even then, the legislation is unlikely to go through, and a government source said voters should expect to continue to be disappointed by the lacklustre performance of its politicians for the immediate future.



James Tate

A pick and mix of words; now online, better packaged and more expensive, like everything post-COVID. The sour cherries are best. The opinions are my own.