Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:19 pm on 27th March 2019.

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Photo of Oliver Letwin Oliver Letwin Conservative, West Dorset 1:19 pm, 27th March 2019

But my hon. Friend needs to attend to the point that those of us who are proposing this have exactly recognised that precedent. What went wrong on that occasion above all was that it was a single point in time, it did not produce a single answer and therefore it was declared a failure. We are not seeking a single point in time here; we are seeking a process. We are using the first stage of that process as an act of discovery. We are then having a number of days in which politicians can talk to one another and try to achieve a consensus. That can be reflected in a further vote or set of votes. That is a very different process. I think that had that process been applied in the case of the House of Lords we might by now have had a sensibly restructured House of Lords, which alas we do not. But that is another piece of history that I am sure I must not deal with.