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Standing Orders (Public Business)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:21 pm on 22nd October 2015.

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Photo of Chris Grayling Chris Grayling Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons 12:21 pm, 22nd October 2015

No, I do not accept that at all. Indeed, it has already happened. The former Member of Parliament, John Reid, was Health Secretary while representing a Scottish constituency over which he had no jurisdiction in health matters. I happen to believe that we want the best people in this House to do the jobs. Nothing in the proposals will prevent that.

I will make a few points about the Procedure Committee and then take more interventions. I recognise that this is a change to the workings of the House. I have therefore sought to ensure that the views of the House about the process are taken into account. I have given evidence to the Procedure Committee and the Scottish Affairs Committee. I am grateful to the members of both Committees for their work. I have met representatives of the parties across the House and many individual Members over the past few weeks. I listened to the comments that were made earlier in the summer and provided extra time for debate. I extended the timeframe beyond the original 100-day commitment. I also ensured that this debate took place after the Procedure Committee had completed its work.