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Tories pledge deep change

CONSERVATIVE party leader David Cameron has promised that his party will deliver a radical redistribution of power, in an attempt to address voter disquiet over MP expenses.<br /><br />&ldquo;We need to look seriously at the immense power prime ministers wield through their ability to call an election whenever they want. If we want parliament to be a real engine of accountability, we need to show it&rsquo;s not just the creature of the executive,&rdquo; he said.<br /><br />Cameron&rsquo;s proposals include fixed-term Parliaments, limiting use of the royal prerogative, free votes for MPs. and the opening up of the legislative process to outsiders by posting proceedings on YouTube.<br /><br />&ldquo;Through decentralisation, transparency and accountability we must take power away from the political elite and hand it to the man and woman in the street,&rdquo; Cameron said in a letter to a national newspaper.<br /><br />Meanwhile, health secretary Alan Johnson called on Prime Minister Gordon Brown to hold a national referendum on electoral reform, saying that the public should be offered a &ldquo;genuinely radical alternative&rdquo; to the present system. Johnson, who is a favourite to succeed Brown, denied that his calls for reform are a part of a Labour party leadership bid.