New Clause 4 - Compatability with Crime

Part of Extradition Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:45 pm on 21st January 2003.

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Photo of Bob Ainsworth Bob Ainsworth The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department 3:45 pm, 21st January 2003

We should have a public inquiry into the problem of all these foreigners who are infiltrating our political system. Apparently they have been doing so for some time, and it is not just the Labour party that is responsible.—[Interruption.] I understand that Bonar Law was a Canadian, yet the Conservative party allowed him to climb to the very heights. God knows what damage he did to the British parliamentary system as a foreigner with his hands on the levers of power, courtesy of the Conservative party. So that sort of thing has been going on for some time, and is very dangerous indeed.

Whatever we do, we are scolded by the hon. Member for Surrey Heath. Both Bills are in Parliament at the same time. We have obligations that we have entered into that we must try to enact in a reasonable period of time. However, the Government wanted to ensure that both Bills went into Parliament at the same time so that nothing would be hidden.

If we had delayed the Extradition Bill until we had dealt with the Crime (International Co-operation) Bill, the hon. Member for Surrey Heath would have stood up and said that we were doing it in that way because there was another train coming along the track that would be far worse, and would have serious ramifications. If we had done it the other way round, he would have suggested that the Crime (International Co-operation) Bill would contain some appalling measures of which he had not yet had sight.

Both Bills are published, both are in Parliament and both can be scrutinised at the same time. There is nothing hidden, as the hon. Gentleman tried to imply. I reiterate once again the cast-iron, copper-bottomed commitment that we have repeatedly tried to give.