European Communities (Amendment) Bill (Programme) (No. 2)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:50 pm on 11th July 2001.

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Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 3:50 pm, 11th July 2001

It might have been long but it was both valid and pertinent, as usual. My hon. Friend is entirely correct. All the evidence demonstrates that the public are broadly Eurosceptical, but we delude ourselves if we suppose for a moment that the mass of the British public are knowledgeable about or have yet developed an interest in the detailed contents of the treaty of Nice. It is our responsibility fully to debate the issues, to set out the arguments and to demonstrate to the public what the implications are and what the irrevocable loss of the power of self-government that the Bill inevitable entails will mean. That is what we want to do, and it is from that that Labour Members seem so suspiciously anxious to shy away.