Since 2010, the majority of select committee chairs have been elected by MPs. Select committee chairs are appointed in one of two ways. Since 2010 the majority of committee chairs are elected by House-wide secret ballot (27 out of 35 in 2015, including the Backbench Business Committee). The party affiliations of these chairs broadly reflect parties’ seat share in the House of Commons and were agreed by the House on 3 June. Our recent report on select committees found that the introduction of elections for chairs has enhanced their sense of legitimacy. The remaining eight committees continue with the pre-2010 practice of electing their chairs from among their membership – under the strong guidance of the whips. The party affiliations of these committees have not yet been announced. The chairs of select committees are divided up according to seats in the House of Commons. Of those about to be elected, the Tories will have 14 chairs, Labour 11 and the SNP 2. Note that for 2015, this graph shows the distribution of chairs only for those committees where party affiliation is already known. As the Conservative party’s share of the seats in the Commons has increased over the last three […]

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