Angela Browning: We have made the point about GPs before. It is not that we expect them to diagnose someone; it is that they are the gatekeepers and should be able to make an appropriate referral, and when they make a referral, someone with the expertise needs to be available at reasonable notice—it should not an appointment in a year's time—to make that diagnosis. I stress that point. It is not possible...
Angela Browning: Although it is true that the Committee has not yet dealt with new clause 7, reference has been made to fees and costs in relation to the regulatory impact assessment, which the Minister has made available to the Committee. The figures for the savings from merging the three regulatory bodies into one that the Minister has produced for the Committee are extremely wide ranging—I do not have...
Angela Browning: My hon. Friend is exactly right. Notwithstanding the promise that the Minister made in Committee to give more clarification on the figures, it is difficult to make head or tail of them if we cannot disaggregate the fee contribution in the calculations that the Minister has offered. When he replies to my contribution, will he be so good as to elaborate on exactly how the fee-bearing side of...
Angela Browning: One of the problems is that although many of us agreed with the initial concept of the single market—to remove tariff barriers and to have mutual recognition of goods and services—the welter of regulation introduced to bring about total harmonisation throughout the EU has been used as an anti-competitive device within the EU. As a former Minister who had to deal with the food and drinks...
Angela Browning: Having handed powers over to the commissioner, the UK Government no longer have their own seat at the table.
Angela Browning: I am pleased to support the amendments as I spoke on the issue in Committee and I have raised it in the House in the past. The Government must take this opportunity. A code of practice should ensure that people who are sick and who have been admitted to hospital are given a good, nutritionally balanced diet, but it should also go further. It should require that a patient's particular medical...
Angela Browning: That is obviously right. Families who have a loved one in hospital or sick want to do their best for them. I am not saying for one moment that relatives do not want to help, willingly, at mealtimes and other such times. However, there is a difference between the relative who sits by the bed and helps to deliver the meal to the patient and the family who feel that they have to be there at...
Angela Browning: I hope that the hon. Gentleman will reconsider his remarks about people, some of whom are still alive, who did this country a very good service during the second world war.
Angela Browning: I too was present for the Third Reading debate. Can the hon. Gentleman explain this? The technical note states, under the heading "Control of Granite": "The contractual structure of Granite is such that it is effectively controlled by Northern Rock as it continues to service the mortgages in Granite and to provide cash management and other administrative services."
Angela Browning: rose—
Angela Browning: Will the Minister confirm that we can debate as much as we like any regulation that has been subject to qualified majority voting in Brussels and then comes to the House, but that we do not have the power to change it?
Angela Browning: Does my hon. Friend agree that when we hear this talk about being closer to citizens and about citizenship, it does not refer to the citizens of the nation state? The treaty compounds the ever-rolling forward programme of giving democratic legitimacy to the citizens' representation through the EU Parliament, thereby bypassing more of their representation through their national Parliaments.
Angela Browning: What about the legal personality? Through qualified majority voting, we can be bound to international treaties that will not even come in front of this Parliament. Where is the accountability in that?
Angela Browning: This is a treaty, and we are debating it.
Angela Browning: rose—
Angela Browning: Is it not the case that one of the core changes is that the treaty not only extends competences, but means that many new policy areas will now become shared competences? Over time, disputes in those policy areas will be determined by the European Court of Justice. As declaration 17 annexed to the treaty shows, that takes primacy over this House, which is a huge shift of power.
Angela Browning: Will the hon. Gentleman give way on that point?
Angela Browning: Does my hon. Friend also agree that, had the Prime Minister not sold the gold when he did and at the rate he did, we would have £4 billion to look at this in this Budget that we do not have now?
Angela Browning: rose—
Angela Browning: On stewardship and balancing the books, is it still the case that the Department for Work and Pensions, which has responsibility for many of the benefits and policies the Secretary of State is talking about, has not yet had Treasury sanction for its accounts to be signed off on an annual basis? Is the Treasury still overseeing his departmental budget?