We can well understand the Parliamentary Secretary's statement made a few moments ago that he is bewildered. But this is a simple point. I am a little surprised, especially after the legal argument of my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Warwick and Leamington (Sir J. Hobson), and the explanation of the practical aspects given by my hon. Friend the Member for Chippenham (Mr. Awdry) and my hon. Friend the Member for Folkestone and Hythe (Mr. Costain), that the Government cannot accept the Amendment.
They agree that this is an important matter for the court to consider. Indeed, the contrary is unarguable. Nevertheless, they are unwilling to consider it as a first-class reason, together with the four reasons enumerated in paragraphs (a) to (d). This seems to be a wholly unreasonable attitude to adopt. I am sorry that we have had to spend so much time on the matter. The Government would have done better to accept the Amendment. In the circumstances I can only advise my hon. and right hon. Friends to register in the Lobby not only our view of the merits of the case but our disapproval of the Government's attitude.