An alcohol-free Houses of Parliament
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Why are our lawmakers drinking on the job?
Governing a country is a cold sober business, with life-changing legislation being passed. It demands a clear mind and focussed vision, intelligent judgement, concentration, attentive listening, respect for colleagues, and rational debate. All these are impaired or sacrificed under the influence of alcohol.
There are no other major businesses or professions in the UK where drinking on the job is permitted. It is untenable that our seat of government should be the exception. There is no defensible rationale for the provision of alcohol on the Westminster premises, particularly when prices are kept artificially low through taxpayer subsidies. Taxpayers were charged £2.7million for subsidising bars and restaurants at the House of Commons last year, £1.2million for the House of Lords.
We wish our leaders to take full responsibility for the gravity of their work. We call for a 'dry' Parliament, in which no alcohol shall be sold or consumed on Westminster premises, and where MPs and Lords shall not be admitted to the premises if under the influence of alcohol.
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