Parliamentary oversight of negotiations

Part of Informal European Council – in the House of Commons at 7:00 pm on 6th February 2017.

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Photo of Chris Leslie Chris Leslie Labour/Co-operative, Nottingham East 7:00 pm, 6th February 2017

As my hon. Friend says, there are serious questions about hazards that could affect our constituents and substances that pose dangers because, for instance, they may be carcinogenic.

We are disappointed in the Government not only because of their White Paper, but because they are trying to gag Parliament and prevent it from debating these issues. Muzzling Members on both sides of the House on these questions means that we will end up far poorer and far worse off, and it sends a message to the Lords that they will have to do the job of scrutiny and due diligence that we were unable to do. This is our only substantive opportunity to debate the Bill. Parliament deserves more respect than the Government have shown in their insubstantial, inadequate White Paper, which does not touch on many of the questions in our new clauses. We simply want to know what they plan to do, and I sincerely hope that the Minister will answer our questions when he responds to the debate.