London: British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg on Monday said the House of Lords is a `flawed institution` that exercises power without legitimacy, which made it necessary to reform the 700-year-old upper house.
Opening a two-debate in the House of Commons on the government`s controversial plans to reform the upper chamber, Clegg said that the House of Lords should be a place for people who are public-spirited, but who do not want to be involved in politics full-time.
The plans, seen to be driven mainly by the Liberal Democrats in the ruling coalition, include smaller number of members of the upper house, and members being elected rather than being based in heritage.
The plans face considerable opposition from sections in the Conservative party.
A letter opposing the reforms, signed by 70 Conservative MPs, called for "full and unrestricted scrutiny" of the bill, and expressed "serious concerns" over the bill which it says will "pile a constitutional crisis on top of the economic crisis".
The plans likely to drastically reduce the membership of the chamber to 450 from the current 800.