My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary meets his colleague the First Minister regularly to discuss a range of issues, including identity cards. It has always been for the Scottish Executive and Parliament to decide whether ID cards should be used for accessing devolved public services, and the First Minister and my right hon. Friend are entirely in agreement on that.
The Minister will be aware that the devolved Executive have stated clearly that they do not wish to use identity cards for access to devolved services. Will further meetings be arranged to find out the true feeling of the Scottish Executive and of the Scottish people, who would prefer to spend their money not on this expensive scheme but on additional police and security services? Will the Government accept the will of the public and of the majority of Members in this House, who believe that the ID card scheme is fatally flawed?
As the hon. Gentleman knows, the Home Office is always assiduous in its research. In answering his question, I can go the extra mile and be even more authoritative, because I visited the Gyle shopping centre in his constituency on
"Good demonstration, and it worked."
"Great idea. Wonderful demonstration."
"It is good to see new technology being utilised for something that is so useful to our society."
I am sure that the hon. Gentleman speaks for his constituents with authority, but I, too, have consulted them, and there is strong support among them for our proposals.