Permitted Excess of the Fund

Part of New Clause 3 – in the House of Commons at 8:05 pm on 20th July 1987.

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Photo of Tony Blair Tony Blair , Sedgefield 8:05 pm, 20th July 1987

On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. I well understand your ruling that on the Third Reading of a Finance Bill we have greater latitude than on Third Readings of other measures, but I respectfully submit that hon. Members cannot enter into a general debate on the economy, including economic growth and the balance of payments. I draw your attention, Mr. Deputy Speaker, to page 840 of "Erskine May", part of which states: While the normal rules relating to the scope of debate on third reading apply to the Finance Bill as much as to other bills, in practice some degree of latitude is frequently permitted. I submit that that means that we can refer occasionally to the economic effect of certain clauses in a broader way than would be possible when participating in other Third Reading debates, but we cannot translate a Third Reading debate into a Second Reading debate. When discussing a Finance Bill two years ago, some of my hon. Friends were very much slapped down by the Chair when they sought to broaden the scope of the debate, and I am concerned at the breadth of the debate.