Treaty on European Union

Part of Orders of the Day — European Communities (Amendment) Bill – in the House of Commons at 8:30 pm on 4th March 1993.

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Photo of Alan Simpson Alan Simpson , Nottingham South 8:30 pm, 4th March 1993

I was trying to make a point about the European Court of Justice and about whether the question of subsidiarity was justiciable. The assumption by the advisers was that the court would be unlikely to make a judgment which was in conflict with the consensus among the rest of the European states.

There were mixed messages for the House on the Commission's ability to apply the social chapter. The first message was that the Commission said clearly that it heard the debate going on in the House, but did not believe that the Commission's ability to apply the social chapter depended on whether Britain accepted it. The Commission's officers believed that it had, in article 118, all the powers necessary to develop a unified European social policy.