Lord President of the Council (Speech)

Oral Answers to Questions — Wireless and Television – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 13th July 1967.

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Photo of Mr Tufton Beamish Mr Tufton Beamish , Lewes 12:00 am, 13th July 1967

asked the Prime Minister whether the public speech by the Lord President of the Council made at Coventry on 4th June 1967, on the prices and incomes standstill represents the policy of Her Majesty's Government.

Photo of Mr Tufton Beamish Mr Tufton Beamish , Lewes

Well, is not that peculiar? Is it really Government policy that even a restoration of the growth rate and improved social services cannot be achieved without a massive cut-back in defence—massive, repeat massive?

Photo of Mr Harold Wilson Mr Harold Wilson , Huyton

We have always said, and the hon. and gallant Gentleman will have a chance of studying this, I hope, next week, that we cannot achieve economic viability and stability on the scale we want, still less the social service result, unless we cut our defence costs to the resources available.

Photo of Mr Duncan Sandys Mr Duncan Sandys , Wandsworth Streatham

Is not this a rare and refreshing example of a Minister blurting out the unvarnished truth?

Photo of Mr Harold Wilson Mr Harold Wilson , Huyton

I am very glad to have the right hon. Gentleman's support for what my right hon. Friend said about defence. I shall look forward to his opposition speech below the Gangway supporting the cuts in defence which will be announced.