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Mr. McLeish: And with the Keeper of the Seal.

Mrs. Michie: Indeed. The Minister should ask the Queen whether it is in her power to change the rules. It would not lead to the end of the House of Windsor or to the demise of the Scottish Office and all its Ministers, no matter how close they will be to Holyrood house.

I ask the Minister to give the amendment serious consideration. It would be better if the Bill referred to Prince Charles as the Duke of Rothesay. The town of Rothesay would be delighted if the Minister accepted the amendment.

Mr. McAllion: Will the Minister explain why there has to be any reference to the Duke of Cornwall, to the Duke of Rothesay or to Her Majesty the Queen? Why should the strengthening of democracy represented by the establishment of a Scottish Parliament be watered down by making Bills passed by that democratic Parliament subject to the assent of people who are unelected?

Mr. Dalyell: I think it pretty churlish of the hon. Member for Argyll and Bute (Mrs. Michie) not to mention all those famous conferences of the Scottish Labour party that have taken place at Rothesay. Those of us who have braved the boat back in choppy waters feel quite strongly--[Interruption.] I do not know what my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State just said sotto voce, but I think he remembers one of those occasions.

What prompted the Government to table amendment No. 221? I am not saying that the drafting was bad or defective, but I should like to know whether there was a reason for the afterthought. It is not an unimportant amendment.

Mr. Salmond: I associate myself with what was said by the hon. Member for Linlithgow (Mr. Dalyell). I think that both of us have been victims in the sense of having our rights and privileges withdrawn.

I am sure that the Scottish Parliament will appreciate that, if a Member's rights and privileges must be withdrawn--which they may well have to be--the matter must come before the whole Parliament rather than being disposed of by Whips, Committees or anything of that nature.

Amendment No. 220 refers to a sub judice rule. I know that amendment No. 221 deals with the question of rights and privileges, but I should like to hear from the Minister that the Parliament will have the right to be protected from defamation actions. That is an essential prerequisite for any Parliament.

The hon. Member for Linlithgow spoke of braving the waters. I am certain that he knows the exact latitude and longitude and the direction of the boat, as he knows all about naval vessels at sea. The Scottish National party is

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the party that most recently held an annual conference at Rothesay, and a tremendous place it was, too--and a tremendous conference.

Just over a year ago, we attended a ceremony marking the return of the Stone of Destiny. Numerous people of whom I had never heard were higher in the order of precedence than the Secretary of State for Scotland--or, for that matter, the Scottish First Minister-to-be--and certainly higher than any lowly Member of Parliament. There was for instance, the Gold Stick for Scotland, who I had always thought was the snooker player Mr. Hendry.

Mr. Dalyell: The Gold Stick in Waiting.

Mr. Salmond: The Gold Stick in Waiting as well. I learn something every day.

I wish that the hon. Member for Argyll and Bute (Mrs. Michie) had drafted her amendment No. 34 more widely, to establish whether the Scottish Parliament could dispose of some of these unnecessary titles of which no one has heard, and which should not clutter up the scene in case anyone mistakes their holders for people who have been elected or have a democratic mandate, or a right to carry a gold stick or anything else.

As for the Government amendments, I hope that the Minister can reassure us that he will not be sending all the bad boys and girls away for two weeks without due process, and that Parliament will be protected from defamation actions, as any genuinely inquisitorial Parliament must be.

Mr. Canavan: Will the Minister explain why schedule 3(5) is needed? Why would some Bills require the consent of Her Majesty, the Prince and Steward of Scotland or the Duke of Cornwall--who, I have now learnt, is also the Duke of Rothesay? I know who Her Majesty is, but who on earth is the Prince and Steward of Scotland? When did the people of Scotland ever elect any prince or steward for Scotland, and why does that person's consent have to be sought before a Scottish Bill becomes the law of the land?

Mr. McLeish: I can tell the hon. Member for Banff and Buchan (Mr. Salmond) that the MSPs will be covered in regard to defamation. I believe that we shall be having further discussions about privilege at a later stage.

Let me reply to the points made by my hon. Friend the Member for Linlithgow (Mr. Dalyell) about amendment No. 221. Clause 76 requires the Parliament to


but it does not expressly make provision for the withdrawal of any salary when a Member is excluded. In view of the powers that the Parliament has to make provision in the Standing Orders for excluding a Member, under schedule 3(1), it is considered that those powers should be supplemented by a general power providing that such a Member should lose his rights and privileges, including his salary. That reinforces the nature of exclusion as a punishment and a deterrent, and is similar to the powers relating to Members of this Parliament. Let me tell the hon. Member for Banff and Buchan, as a

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postscript, that it will be a matter for the Parliament; nothing will be done behind closed doors to the disadvantage of natural justice.

The speech of my hon. Friend the Member for Falkirk, West (Mr. Canavan) complemented that of the hon. Member for Argyll and Bute (Mrs. Michie), who made such a compelling case that it troubles me greatly to have to disappoint her. Of course we all celebrate the 500th anniversary of the first application of the title Duke of Rothesay to the sovereign's eldest son, but I am afraid that that is not a satisfactory basis on which to accept her amendment.

The provision in schedule 3(5) places Bills of the Scottish Parliament in the same position as Bills of the Westminster Parliament in terms of their requirement to obtain the consent of Her Majesty, the Prince and Steward of Scotland or the Duke of Cornwall when a provision in a Bill impacts on certain Crown interests. There is no duty in Westminster to obtain the consent of the Duke of Rothesay, and I therefore cannot accept the amendment, which would place an unnecessary duty on the Scottish Parliament. To delete the reference to Cornwall would remove that duty to obtain consent, and would subject Bills of a Scottish Parliament to different arrangements in respect of Crown interests from those pertaining at Westminster.

Mr. Wallace: What interests, if any, has the Duke of Cornwall in Scotland?

Mr. McLeish: The point is being made in relation to what exists, but also in relation to what could happen in the future.

Mr. Grieve: Could we not just refer to "the Duke of Cornwall and Rothesay"? I think that the hon. Member for Argyll and Bute (Mrs. Michie) had a point. I also appreciate the need to stay on a par with procedure in this Parliament, but I wondered whether the Minister would consider my suggestion, which would reflect the status of the heir to the throne in Scotland.

Mr. McLeish rose--

The Chairman: Order. I understood that the Minister was still making his speech, and had given way. Is that correct?

Mr. McLeish: I had finished my speech, Sir Alan.

A serious point is involved here. We are trying to achieve consistency in the submission of Bills. Of course we are talking about a similar person, but, ultimately, I do not think that it is for us to depart from the present arrangements, although there may be good historical and other reasons, which other hon. Members have advanced.

Mr. Alasdair Morgan (Galloway and Upper Nithsdale) rose--

The Chairman: Order. The Minister has just sat down; is the hon. Gentleman trying to catch my eye?

Mr. Morgan: Yes, Sir Alan.

Instead of making an intervention, I shall make a very short speech.

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It strikes me that, as the Duke of Rothesay is the Duke of Cornwall, it really does not matter which title is in the Bill, and I therefore do not understand why the Government are unhappy about using the words "Duke of Rothesay". Do they fear that at some future stage the two titles may separate, and not be held by the same person? That is an interesting diversion on which we could speculate, but I do not think it likely. As the Duke of Rothesay is the Duke of Cornwall, what on earth is wrong with using that title in the Bill?

Mr. Canavan: The situation is becoming more confusing as the debate continues. Since my earlier speech, I have been informed, albeit informally, that the Prince and Steward of Scotland is also the Prince of Wales, and the Duke of Cornwall, and the Duke of Rothesay. Why on earth should he get two mentions when even his mum gets only one--and now it is suggested that he should have three mentions?


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