Procedure for Appointing Judges — [Mr Virendra Sharma in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 2:42 pm on 8th October 2019.

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Photo of Bob Neill Bob Neill Chair, Justice Committee 2:42 pm, 8th October 2019

It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Sharma.

I warmly congratulate Stuart C. McDonald on securing this debate. I agreed with virtually every word he said, and I hope we can establish a consensus in Westminster Hall. Like him, I was heartened to hear the very clear statement of the Government’s position from the Lord Chancellor in Justice questions today. The hon. Gentleman is right to say that were we to embark on an American-style system of political selection for our Supreme Court or any other court, we would indeed be the poorer for it. Anyone who has seen the farrago that passes for confirmation hearings before the Senate in the United States—a process that diminishes the quality of law and, frankly, if anything, undermines the integrity of its judiciary—would never wish to see that in the United Kingdom. I think the debate is useful, because it perhaps enables us to put a hare that has been set running by one or two people firmly to rest, where it belongs and where it should stay.