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Madam Deputy Speaker (Sylvia Heal): I must draw the attention of the House to the fact that privilege is involved in Lords amendment No. 43, which is to be considered today. If the House agrees to this Lords amendment, I shall ensure that the appropriate entry is made in the Journal.
Simon Hughes (Southwark, North and Bermondsey): On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. For the convenience of the House, it would be helpful, given that we have groups of Government motions and amendments from the other place, if you could tell us what will happen when we reach each of the cut-off deadlines, in terms of what could be voted on, what must be voted on, what will be taken separately and what will be taken together. That would spare us the confusion that we, not surprisingly, got into last week, when we got into slightly difficult procedural areas.
Madam Deputy Speaker: I think that there could be quite an involved answer to the hon. Gentleman's question. May I suggest that he confers with the Clerk at the Table, so that we can proceed with the business of the day?
Jeremy Corbyn (Islington, North): Further to that point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I recognise your advice to the hon. Member for Southwark, North and Bermondsey (Simon Hughes) to go and talk to the Clerk, but may their conversation be broadcast to the rest of us, so that we can have some understanding of exactly what voting there is to be and when, and what we are voting on?
The Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. David Blunkett): Further to that point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I might be able to help here. I hope that there is consensus on being able to vote on each collective part of the Bill as returned to us from the House of Lords, so that, on the cut-off points, we are able to vote on the substantive main amendment with those taken with itso that there is an understanding of the terms in which we are doing thatrather than spend all the time having to vote on individual items. We would be very happy to accommodate that with all Members of the House.
Mr. Mark Fisher (Stoke-on-Trent, Central): On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I think that you might just have answered my point of order. However, although I am sure that the Home Secretary was trying to be helpful to the House, it is perhaps a failing on my part that I did not understand exactly what he was saying.
Jeremy Corbyn: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I understand the advice that you have just given to the House. Are those votes going to be taken at the conclusion of each section, or are we going to have a mammoth voting session at midnight?
Mr. Fisher: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. So far as I can see, that means that there are potentially at least seven votes in the first section, which could take at least an hour and a half. We have only an hour and a quarter to debate the whole of the next section.
Simon Hughes: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. This is my last point of order. I am trying to be helpful to the House in responding to the Home Secretary's helpful intervention. Certainly, those on our Benchesand I think that I am right in saying the Conservatives, toowould seek to test the opinion of the House on an issue at the beginning of a group, rather than detain the House by voting on all the subsequent matters. We will chooseI hope with the compliance, as it were, of the Governmentthe substantive main point, and seek to divide on it, and then move on to the next section.
Lords amendment: No. 5, in page 7, line 7, after "authority" insert
"to a relevant public authority".
Madam Deputy Speaker: With this, we may take the following: Lords amendment No. 6 and the Government motion to disagree thereto, Lords amendments Nos. 7 and 8 and the Government motion to disagree thereto, Lords amendment No. 38 and the Government motion to
Mr. Blunkett: First, and in the interests of brevity, I shall describe the way in which we want to proceed this evening and subsequently in the House of Lords. Many things have been said outside the House, but the tone of debate on Second Reading and in Committee was one of constructive dialogue among people rightly querying, scrutinising and, where appropriate, opposing. Tonight and tomorrow, I want to proceed in the same spirit from the Government Front Bench to seek to allay fears and to find common ground where it exists, disagreeing only where we genuinely do so.
There have been misunderstandings from time to time, but the Human Rights Committee, the Home Affairs Committee, individual Members and parties have made suggestions here and in the House of Lords that we have taken on board, whether on sunset clauses or reviews or on reasonableness or links with terrorism. We have adjusted the justice and home affairs provisions. We have included consultation and, where appropriate, affirmative resolution. We have sought to accommodate where we can the genuine concerns of Members of this House and Members of the House of Lords. I intend to try to do so as we proceed tonight.
I must make it clear, however, that no one would understand a position whereby we failed to take the necessary action and, having so failed, were later proved to have failed to provide the necessary protections. That is the spirit in which I intend to proceed.