I have nothing to add to my reply of 15th November to a Question by the hon. and gallant Member for Lewes (Sir T. Beamish), my statement and the replies to Questions which followed it on 10th November and to my speech in the debate on 17th November.—[Vol. 736, c. 220; Vol. 735, c. 1539; Vol. 736, c. 759.]
Would not the right hon. Gentleman agree that, if we are to have a really informed public debate on this question, of the kind that I am sure he himself wants, it is necessary for the Government to make clear whether they still adhere to the five principles laid down by the Labour Party four years ago?
I am anxious for a public debate and that it should be informed. But there is enough information—has been for some years—to provide fuel for such a debate. I am more concerned, however, with getting results than with getting a good debate. As I explained in the recent debate, for us to say in detail what our terms and conditions would be on particular questions would be harmful to the result which so many of us have in mind and would simply lead to pressure to go still further in the terms we would be prepared to agree to.
It is regrettable that it always appears to be the President of France who is the stumbling block to our entering the Common Market. Would it not, therefore, be a good idea for the Prime Minister to seek an early meeting with the President in order to clear the air with him prior to seeking meetings with the leaders of other European countries?
That was said by right hon. and hon. Members on both sides in the recent debate and on many other occasions. I went so far as to say something about it in a speech outside this House last night.