Results 161–180 of 2018 for speaker:Mr William Ross

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Disqualification from Ministerial Office in United Kingdom (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: I thought that the correct word was "intervene". I give way to the hon. Gentleman.

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Disqualification from Ministerial Office in United Kingdom (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: We are concerned about the influence of the Whips, should they be appointed to positions of power. In those circumstances, we should bear my points in mind although, after all these hours in Committee, I am not putting them as concisely—

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Disqualification from Ministerial Office in United Kingdom (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: Thank you, Mr. Martin. I want to draw my remarks to a close, because several other Members want to speak. The intent of the new clauses is clear and the wording is reasonably good. In the light of that and of your strictures, Mr. Martin, and bearing in mind the fact that I am continually interrupted, I commend the new clauses to the Committee. I hope for support from Conservative Members and...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Disqualification from Ministerial Office in United Kingdom (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: I do want to ask about that. I am curious as to whether the term "Minister" always includes the term "junior Minister", as that is not in the Bill. Will the Minister take on board the fact that the First Minister and the Deputy First Minister, once elected, then become Ministers of the Government of Ireland. I am not sure if he is aware that if one has to resign, they both go. The problem...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Disqualification from Ministerial Office in United Kingdom (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: The First Minister and the Deputy First Minister are as one. If one falls, they both fall. Are the First Minister and the Deputy First Minister looked upon as Ministers within the Northern Ireland Executive? That does not appear to be the case according to clause 2(2).

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: I regret that I would have to go off and study that passage. If you, Mr. Lord, would give me permission to speak again before these debates finish I would be in a position to do that and then meet the hon. Gentleman's request. He was helpful to me a moment ago, but I confess that in 1920 I was not even a twinkle in my father's eye. I will deal with the matter if he does not. With those few...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: The problem is that some of us have very great difficulty in understanding the Bill, and we need it repeated from various points of view to get things absolutely clear in our minds. I fear that we are more obtuse than the Ministers.

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: I have been here constantly for nearly 21 hours—very rarely leaving the Chamber. I have followed the debate as closely as anyone, and I am as dissatisfied now as I was when I first came in to the debate. If we carry on tomorrow, tomorrow will see me still here. That is a part of the duties of a Member of this House: to attend this place, to argue the case for our constituents and to see...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: Indeed, and given that, in some places, different languages are spoken, it is much better to be in a place where English is the mother tongue.

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: The House will have heard the hon. Member for Buckingham (Mr. Bercow), and I am sorry that there is so little interest among Government Members in this important Bill. Labour Members should have come to hear the criticism, and the impossibly poor defence that Ministers are making of the Bill. They describe new clause 3 as a consequential amendment.

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: That was the Under-Secretary's last but one defence. Earlier, he had been quite lucid. However, he has been up all night and has been under great strain, trying to think up excuses for what he is trying to ram down people's throats. The Bill applies more to Northern Ireland than to elsewhere. When I see the words "consequential repeal" in a Bill, I wonder. The allegedly "consequential...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: May I say to you, Mr. Lord, that I thought that I was following the course that the Government have taken with the Bill? Many people outside the Committee are not fully aware of the background in the concise, clear manner that I am trying to put it on the record. It is important that people who examine the Bill, read the debates and are curious about our concerns should understand the...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: Thank you, Mr. Lord. I shall try to come back inside the elastic fence that I always use in debates such as this. Sometimes a little push here and there at the fence that surrounds us reveals to the general public what they have a right to know. Along with Ministers and hon. Members, we are trying to inform the general public through our debates. We have a duty to tell them what the position is.

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: Are these proceedings not being televised and recorded in Hansard? Is not Hansard available on the internet and for sale? Is it not available to the 659 Members of Parliament—

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: Indeed, Mr. Lord, I am progressing toward the point. However, I have to confess that it remains some distance away, even within the narrow confines in which you want me to remain. However, bearing in mind your remarks, I shall try to make progress. I do not believe that the clause should be consequential. It should be at the heart of the Bill and all other provisions should be hung from it,...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: I am always happy to take good advice from my hon. Friend—after all, he was a teacher in a previous incarnation, so he is well qualified to attempt to gain and impart knowledge. I shall press both the Ministers who have been involved in our debates so far, in the hope that they will take account of our remarks and answer our questions. To recap, the original legislative change was made to...

Orders of the Day — Disqualifications Bill: Consequential Repeal (25 Jan 2000)

Mr William Ross: It can only be redundant because of the extraordinarily bad drafting of the Bill. If it had been drafted following the same rules and procedures that applied to the Representation of the People Bill, which was considered last week, it would not have appeared before us in its present form. The provision that the Government are attempting to repeal through clause 3 would have remained.


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