Constitutional Reform Bill [HL]

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:45 pm on 13th July 2004.

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Photo of Lord Lester of Herne Hill Lord Lester of Herne Hill Liberal Democrat 5:45 pm, 13th July 2004

I shall not follow the noble Lord, Lord Campbell of Alloway, into the tangled undergrowth and thickets of the ancient British constitution through the ages. Instead I shall make one point only and a point in support of the speeches made by my noble friend Lord Goodhart and the noble Lord, Lord Brennan.

I wish to give a short piece of evidence to the Committee. I am one of the few Members of this House who has served in a government in which rule-of-law questions came up frequently in Cabinet. The conduct of Ministers at the time persuaded me that the present system was not quite as perfect as suggested by those with a conservative disposition.

I had the privilege of serving in the second Wilson government—