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Mental Capacity Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 10:30 pm on 1st February 2005.

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Photo of Lord Goodhart Lord Goodhart Shadow Minister, Law Officers (Constitutional Affairs) 10:30 pm, 1st February 2005

I am sorry that the noble Baroness did not reply to the first part of my argument—that is, that the code should be brought in formally as a statutory instrument rather than in this alternative way. However, that is a highly technical point which does not appeal to the Minister and it is not one that I shall particularly press.

The second point is one of substance and I am sorry that the noble Baroness has not felt able to be helpful on it. As I well know, the Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee does excellent work here and it brings independent judgment to these issues. But it cannot always be right and I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Alton, and the noble Baroness, Lady Greengross, for supporting me. However wide the consultation, in something as absolutely central to the Bill as this, it is plainly desirable that we use the affirmative procedure—at least for the approval of the initial code, even if not for subsequent variations of it. Therefore, I think that we are likely to bring back this matter for further discussions on Report. Meanwhile, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.