Whitsuntide Adjournment

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 6th June 1957.

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Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden 12:00 am, 6th June 1957

The right hon. Gentleman says "if possible". I will see whether it is possible to make a statement. If I cannot make a statement I will inform the Leader of the Opposition later this evening of the position I am in in regard to the case. If I find that there is nothing more to say, I do not think that I can say any more. If I can do so, I will try to make it clear. In either case, I will communicate with the Leader of the Opposition later this evening. I cannot say "before the House rises", because I am not clear how long it will sit. That is the best I can do on the case.

I could answer many points that have been put in references to the case, but I think it would possibly be wrong to do so without further consideration of what is obviously regarded by hon. Members as a grave matter. I can say, in reservation, that some of the references to the case, about the widening of a practice like that, have been exaggerated and, secondly, that the gravity of the case has been underestimated. Otherwise, I would not have given the answer I did when it was brought to my attention. Perhaps, on the basis of that, hon. Members will leave the matter in my hands and I will do my best to communicate with the Leader of the Opposition later this afternoon. I am sorry that I cannot communicate with each of his hon. Friends, but no doubt we shall be able to put it about.