Constitutional Reform and Governance Bill

Part of Sustainable Communities Act 2007 (Amendment) Bill – in the House of Commons at 1:15 pm on 8th April 2010.

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Photo of Bill Cash Bill Cash Conservative, Stone 1:15 pm, 8th April 2010

I understand Liberal Democrat concerns about reform of the voting and electoral systems. I have already made my position clear, and I am sure that many other people throughout the country, as well as on our Benches, would concur with dispensing with those provisions-I congratulate my hon. and learned Friend Mr. Grieve on his efforts.

A number of other matters occur to me as we look at the final stages of the Bill. I very much agree with the sentiments expressed by Dr. Wright, because he and I and a number of others have worked extremely diligently on reform of the House. I agree that the wash-up process needs to be looked at properly for the future. Some of what was done-for example, with the Finance Bill-struck me as not a good way to legislate: not one Member of the governing party attended debate on the Finance Bill, except perhaps one who came in for only a few minutes. As I said, the birds have flown but people who are about to vote in the general election are saddled with the consequences of the taxation and public expenditure implications of the Finance Bill. Therefore, the wash-up raises many issues.

The Wright Committee proposals-other than those on the chairmanship and membership of Select Committees-have effectively been ditched and betrayed. They could have been included in the Bill.

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