Investigatory Powers Bill - Commons Reasons

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:15 pm on 2nd November 2016.

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Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence, Deputy Leader of the House of Lords 4:15 pm, 2nd November 2016

My Lords, I first say to those who have supported the amendments in the name of the noble Baroness that I acknowledge the strength of feeling in the House on this emotive issue. As I said in my opening remarks, the Government know how important these matters are to everybody. We need a robust and workable system for media self-regulation, and resolving that is in everybody’s interest. However, I am afraid that I remain of the opinion that the Bill is not the means to achieve that. Of course I agree with the noble Lord, Lord Paddick, that the noble Baroness’s amendments are procedurally in order; that has never been in question. However, first, the scope of the Bill means it cannot do this subject justice. The amendments we are considering today concern only interception of communications and would not necessarily sit well with whatever broader solution is to follow. Secondly, and more importantly, the public consultation which the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport announced yesterday provides a means for a reasoned, informed and considered public debate—