Education Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 22nd April 1970.

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Photo of Mr John Hill Mr John Hill , South Norfolk 12:00 am, 22nd April 1970

I have been seeking for some time to catch your eye, Mr. Speaker. The effect of your Ruling on Standing Order No. 52 must be to prevent the House having the advice in debate of senior hon. Members as to how best to get the House, or indeed the Government, out of this particular fix. Therefore, we shall be precluded from consideration of other possibilities.

I ask you, as a member of the former Committee and a potential receiver of this rather dubious Instruction, whether there are not other methods which are much more consonant with our procedure and do not involve a tortuously created precedent. In the ordinary way is it not proper on a matter which the Government of the day wish to put right, and which has been disagreed to in Standing Committee, to deal with on Report in the whole House?

The Bill cannot go any further without having some meaning brought into it. Would it not be possible to recommit Clause 1, or the whole Bill, as the Government might wish, not to revive the former Committee with Instructions in conflict with the established procedures of the House and of our rules of debate, but to send it back to a Committee of the whole House?