Clause 65 - Pre-consolidation amendments of immigration legislation

Part of Nationality and Borders Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 2 November 2021.

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Photo of Stuart McDonald Stuart McDonald Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 4:00, 2 November 2021

What is taken from that review is perhaps the need for consolidation of immigration legislation, nationality legislation and so on, which I would absolutely support. The challenge with the clause as drafted is that it proposes pretty huge and wide-ranging powers. The Secretary of State can amend pretty much any old Act of Parliament if, in her opinion, it facilitates what is otherwise desirable in connection with the consolidation. It could rewrite citizenship laws, for example, or the entire immigration system. There is a check on it in the sense that the regulations will not come into force until a consolidation Act is passed. There is a broader question about how often Governments tend to help themselves to massive Henry VIII powers when they rewrite all sorts of stuff. I have made that point a million times and nobody listens, so I will leave it at that.