New clause 8 - Income from capital

Part of State Pension Credit Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:30 pm on 25th April 2002.

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Photo of Tim Boswell Tim Boswell Shadow Spokesperson (Business, Innovation and Skills), Shadow Spokesperson (Work and Pensions) 3:30 pm, 25th April 2002

The Under-Secretary has consciously adopted a moderate tone in her response. I have been accused of introducing no new policies and incurring no new public expenditure, and I suppose that one should be grateful for such modest gains.

The Under-Secretary pointed out that there are some procedures and safeguards in the Bill, so that the matter could be looked at. It is important that such assurances are drawn out in our debates. All that I am really saying is that things change over time, whether she or I like or anticipate those things or not. In the interests of fairness, it should be fairly common for the Social Security Advisory Committee, and others, to examine the consequences of the Bill in the area covered by the new clause. That area will need, and I hope will be susceptible to, change.

In deciding whether to press the clause to a vote, I have been thinking that what we have achieved here is a very important development. I have been rehearsing in my mind, since the speech of the hon. Member for Northavon, the sad saga of Sven and Ulrika, which has been occupying the popular prints for a long time. We thought that he was walking out with us, but now we have found that he has really gone back to his true love, supporting the Government. I make no disapprobatory comment, except to record the passing scene and say—[Interruption.] We are getting into very deep waters indeed.

The important point is that we have had a good and, to be honest, a good-natured exchange of views on a key matter. I beg to ask leave to withdraw the motion.

Motion and clause, by leave, withdrawn.