Amendment to the Motion

Procedure and Privileges - Motion to Agree – in the House of Lords at 5:07 pm on 13th July 2021.

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Lord Balfe:

Moved by Lord Balfe

At end insert “but that this House believes that the Lord Speaker should call members during oral questions, in a manner similar to that which pertains in the House of Commons; and calls on the Procedure and Privileges Committee to consider this matter and report by 31 October at the latest.”

Photo of Lord Balfe Lord Balfe Conservative

I am afraid I am not going to be as helpful as my noble friend Lord Cormack. Some interesting points have been made during this debate. One of the most interesting is the fact that this proposal has been around for many years; indeed, I understand it was considered in 2006, when it was decided that it would not be quite this much of a regulated House.

I tabled a very reasoned amendment, which gives until 31 October for the points to be sorted out. The amendment

“calls on the Procedure and Privileges Committee to consider this matter and report”— not to agree it but to consider it—because I think we need to consider the way forward for this House. I am gratified that a number of noble Lords have indicated their support and, on their behalf as much as mine, I would like to test the opinion of the House on this quite fundamental way of us going forward.

Photo of Lord McFall of Alcluith Lord McFall of Alcluith Chair, Freedom of Information Advisory Panel (Lords), Chair, Sub-Committee on Leave of Absence, Chair, House of Lords Commission, Chair, House of Lords Commission, Lord Speaker 5:09 pm, 13th July 2021

The question will be decided by a remote Division. I instruct the clerk to start a remote Division.

The remote voting period is now open. Members are now invited to record their votes using the remote voting system. Members will have 10 minutes to record their votes. I will make an announcement when the remote voting period has ended. Clear the Bar.

Photo of Lord McFall of Alcluith Lord McFall of Alcluith Chair, Freedom of Information Advisory Panel (Lords), Chair, Sub-Committee on Leave of Absence, Chair, House of Lords Commission, Chair, House of Lords Commission, Lord Speaker 5:19 pm, 13th July 2021

My Lords, as noble Lords are aware, there were technical problems with the Division system, but I am told it is now functioning so I will extend the Division by three minutes.

Photo of Baroness Smith of Basildon Baroness Smith of Basildon Shadow Leader of the House of Lords, Shadow Spokesperson (Northern Ireland), Shadow Spokesperson (Cabinet Office), Shadow Spokesperson (Cabinet Office, Constitutional and Devolved issues)

Can I just check with the Lord Speaker: if people have already voted, is that taken as a vote? Is there a way of putting the extension on the screen, and extending it for more than three minutes, as a number of Members have left the Chamber thinking they were unable to vote? I am not convinced that an extra three minutes is long enough.

Division number 2 Procedure and Privileges - Motion to Agree — Amendment to the Motion

Aye: 112 Members of the House of Lords

No: 376 Members of the House of Lords

Ayes: A-Z by last name

Nos: A-Z by last name

Division conducted remotely on Lord Balfe’s amendment to the Motion

Lord Balfe’s amendment to the Motion disagreed.

Motion agreed.