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Sir Patrick Cormack (South Staffordshire) (Con): Has my hon. Friend had a satisfactory assurance from the Minister in that regard?

Mr. Harper: The Minister gave clear assurances to my hon. Friend the Member for Leominster (Bill Wiggin). If the Minister has anything further to add to that, I am happy to give way to him.

Mr. Bradshaw: I point out to the hon. Gentleman and others who have suggested that a possible solution may be to ban the showing of dogs with docked tails without banning the docking of tails, that that would be extremely difficult to achieve. Can he imagine the Kennel Club acceding to a situation in which docking was not banned, but showing docked dogs was banned? It simply would not work.

Mr. Harper: I still think that exploring that route would be beneficial, instead of having a ban.

When we were listening to the lengthy contribution from the hon. Member for Cleethorpes (Shona McIsaac), she referred on several occasions to the scientific evidence. It appeared that her definition of scientific evidence was the opinions that she agreed with, and anything else was purely anecdotal. One of the difficulties with the issue, which I have considered because of the interest expressed by my constituents, is that there is no clear evidence either way. It is certainly true, as the hon. Member for Clwyd, South (Mr. Jones) said, that many vets have opinions about the issue, but there is a lack of clear scientific evidence. There is anecdotal evidence from those who use working dogs and from what has happened in countries such as Sweden, which have a complete ban. That evidence appears to show that damage to dogs' tails has increased, and that has to be taken into consideration.

This is a complex issue and the scientific arguments are not clear. It would be much more sensible to stick with clause 5 and consider ways to drive down demand for cosmetic docking, instead of adopting new clause 8.

Mr. Drew: In the short time I have left, I shall try to be consistent. My hon. Friend the Minister has changed his position at least twice and the Opposition spokesperson has also changed position tonight. Thank goodness for the Liberal Democrats.

Mr. Bradshaw: I have not changed my position once on this issue.

Mr. Drew: At least the Liberal Democrats have been consistent, although the hon. Member for Lewes (Norman Baker) has unfortunately got the chop.

It is nonsense to pretend that we will go backwards if we retain the status quo, which has failed to deliver an end to the cosmetic docking of tails. The majority of vets want to see the end of the practice, but we have ended up with a lot of illegal tail docking—
 
14 Mar 2006 : Column 1362
 

It being two hours after the commencement of proceedings, Mr. Deputy Speaker put forthwith the Question already proposed from the Chair, pursuant to Order [this day].

Question put, That the clause be read a Second time:—

The House divided: Ayes 476, Noes 63.

Division No. 187
[7.27 pm


AYES

Abbott, Ms Diane
Afriyie, Adam
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, rh Mr. Bob
Ainsworth, Mr. Peter
Alexander, Danny
Alexander, rh Mr. Douglas
Allen, Mr. Graham
Amess, Mr. David
Ancram, rh Mr. Michael
Anderson, Mr. David
Anderson, Janet
Armstrong, rh Hilary
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, Mr. Ian
Bailey, Mr. Adrian
Baird, Vera
Baker, Norman
Baldry, Tony
Balls, Ed
Banks, Gordon
Barker, Gregory
Barlow, Ms Celia
Barrett, John
Bayley, Hugh
Beckett, rh Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne
Beith, rh Mr. Alan
Benn, rh Hilary
Benton, Mr. Joe
Bercow, John
Berry, Roger
Betts, Mr. Clive
Binley, Mr. Brian
Blackman, Liz
Blackman-Woods, Dr. Roberta
Blears, rh Hazel
Blizzard, Mr. Bob
Blunkett, rh Mr. David
Borrow, Mr. David S.
Boswell, Mr. Tim
Bottomley, Peter
Bradshaw, Mr. Ben
Brady, Mr. Graham
Brazier, Mr. Julian
Breed, Mr. Colin
Brokenshire, James
Brooke, Annette
Brown, Lyn
Brown, rh Mr. Nicholas
Brown, Mr. Russell
Browne, rh Mr. Des
Browning, Angela
Bruce, Malcolm
Bryant, Chris
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnham, Andy
Burstow, Mr. Paul
Burt, Lorely
Butterfill, Sir John
Byers, rh Mr. Stephen
Byrne, Mr. Liam
Cable, Dr. Vincent
Cairns, David
Campbell, Mr. Gregory
Campbell, rh Sir Menzies
Campbell, Mr. Ronnie
Carmichael, Mr. Alistair
Caton, Mr. Martin
Cawsey, Mr. Ian
Challen, Colin
Chapman, Ben
Chaytor, Mr. David
Clapham, Mr. Michael
Clappison, Mr. James
Clark, Ms Katy
Clark, Paul
Clarke, rh Mr. Kenneth
Clegg, Mr. Nick
Clelland, Mr. David
Clwyd, rh Ann
Coaker, Mr. Vernon
Coffey, Ann
Cohen, Harry
Connarty, Michael
Conway, Derek
Cook, Frank
Cooper, Rosie
Cooper, Yvette
Corbyn, Jeremy
Cousins, Jim
Crabb, Mr. Stephen
Crausby, Mr. David
Creagh, Mary
Cruddas, Jon
Cryer, Mrs. Ann
Cummings, John
Cunningham, Mr. Jim
Cunningham, Tony
Curry, rh Mr. David
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs. Claire
Darling, rh Mr. Alistair
Davey, Mr. Edward
David, Mr. Wayne
Davidson, Mr. Ian
Davies, Philip
Davies, Mr. Quentin
Dean, Mrs. Janet
Denham, rh Mr. John
Devine, Mr. Jim
Dhanda, Mr. Parmjit
Dismore, Mr. Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, rh Frank
Dodds, Mr. Nigel
Donaldson, Mr. Jeffrey M.
Donohoe, Mr. Brian H.
Doran, Mr. Frank
Dorrell, rh Mr. Stephen
Dorries, Mrs. Nadine
Dowd, Jim
Drew, Mr. David
Duddridge, James
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth
Eagle, Angela
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs. Louise
Ellwood, Mr. Tobias
Engel, Natascha
Ennis, Jeff
Evennett, Mr. David
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Mr. Michael
Farrelly, Paul
Farron, Tim
Featherstone, Lynne
Field, rh Mr. Frank
Field, Mr. Mark
Fisher, Mark
Flello, Mr. Robert
Flint, Caroline
Foster, Mr. Don
Foster, Mr. Michael (Worcester)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings and Rye)
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Francois, Mr. Mark
Gapes, Mike
Gardiner, Barry
George, Andrew
George, rh Mr. Bruce
Gerrard, Mr. Neil
Gibb, Mr. Nick
Gibson, Dr. Ian
Gidley, Sandra
Gillan, Mrs. Cheryl
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Mr. Roger
Goggins, Paul
Goodman, Helen
Goodman, Mr. Paul
Gove, Michael
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian
Greening, Justine
Griffith, Nia
Griffiths, Nigel
Grogan, Mr. John
Gummer, rh Mr. John
Gwynne, Andrew
Hague, rh Mr. William
Hain, rh Mr. Peter
Hall, Mr. Mike
Hall, Patrick
Hamilton, Mr. Fabian
Hammond, Mr. Philip
Hammond, Stephen
Hancock, Mr. Mike
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harris, Dr. Evan
Harvey, Nick
Havard, Mr. Dai
Heald, Mr. Oliver
Healey, John
Heath, Mr. David
Heathcoat-Amory, rh Mr. David
Hemming, John
Henderson, Mr. Doug
Hendrick, Mr. Mark
Hendry, Charles
Hepburn, Mr. Stephen
Heppell, Mr. John
Hermon, Lady
Hewitt, rh Ms Patricia
Heyes, David
Hill, rh Keith
Hillier, Meg
Hoban, Mr. Mark
Hoey, Kate
Holloway, Mr. Adam
Holmes, Paul
Hood, Mr. Jimmy
Hoon, rh Mr. Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hopkins, Kelvin
Horam, Mr. John
Horwood, Martin
Hosie, Stewart
Howard, rh Mr. Michael
Howarth, David
Howarth, rh Mr. George
Howells, Dr. Kim
Hughes, rh Beverley
Huhne, Chris
Hunter, Mark
Hurd, Mr. Nick
Hutton, rh Mr. John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
Illsley, Mr. Eric
Ingram, rh Mr. Adam
Irranca-Davies, Huw
Jack, rh Mr. Michael
Jackson, Glenda
Jackson, Mr. Stewart
James, Mrs. Siân C.
Johnson, rh Alan
Johnson, Ms Diana R.
Jones, Helen
Jones, Mr. Kevan
Jones, Lynne
Jones, Mr. Martyn
Jowell, rh Tessa
Joyce, Mr. Eric
Kaufman, rh Sir Gerald
Kawczynski, Daniel
Keeley, Barbara
Keen, Alan
Keen, Ann
Keetch, Mr. Paul
Kelly, rh Ruth
Kemp, Mr. Fraser
Kennedy, rh Mr. Charles
Key, Robert
Khabra, Mr. Piara S.
Khan, Mr. Sadiq
Kidney, Mr. David
Kilfoyle, Mr. Peter
Knight, rh Mr. Greg
Knight, Jim
Kramer, Susan
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Lait, Mrs. Jacqui
Lamb, Norman
Lammy, Mr. David
Lancaster, Mr. Mark
Lansley, Mr. Andrew
Laxton, Mr. Bob
Lazarowicz, Mark
Leech, Mr. John
Lepper, David
Letwin, rh Mr. Oliver
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Mr. Ivan
Lidington, Mr. David
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Llwyd, Mr. Elfyn
Loughton, Tim
Love, Mr. Andrew
Lucas, Ian
Luff, Peter
MacDougall, Mr. John
Mackinlay, Andrew
MacShane, rh Mr. Denis
Mahmood, Mr. Khalid
Malik, Mr. Shahid
Mallaber, Judy
Mann, John
Marris, Rob
Marsden, Mr. Gordon
Marshall, Mr. David
Martlew, Mr. Eric
Maude, rh Mr. Francis
May, rh Mrs. Theresa
McAvoy, rh Mr. Thomas
McCabe, Steve
McCarthy, Kerry
McCarthy-Fry, Sarah
McCartney, rh Mr. Ian
McDonagh, Siobhain
McDonnell, John
McFadden, Mr. Pat
McFall, rh Mr. John
McGovern, Mr. Jim
McGuire, Mrs. Anne
McIntosh, Miss Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McKenna, Rosemary
Meale, Mr. Alan
Merron, Gillian
Michael, rh Alun
Miliband, Edward
Miller, Andrew
Miller, Mrs. Maria
Milton, Anne
Mitchell, Mr. Andrew
Moffatt, Laura
Mole, Chris
Moon, Mrs. Madeleine
Moore, Mr. Michael
Moran, Margaret
Morden, Jessica
Morgan, Julie
Morley, Mr. Elliot
Moss, Mr. Malcolm
Mountford, Kali
Mudie, Mr. George
Mullin, Mr. Chris
Munn, Meg
Murphy, Mr. Denis
Murphy, Mr. Jim
Murphy, rh Mr. Paul
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
Naysmith, Dr. Doug
Newmark, Mr. Brooks
Norris, Dan
O'Brien, Mr. Mike
O'Hara, Mr. Edward
Olner, Mr. Bill
Öpik, Lembit
Osborne, Mr. George
Osborne, Sandra
Ottaway, Richard
Owen, Albert
Paice, Mr. James
Palmer, Dr. Nick
Pearson, Ian
Pelling, Mr. Andrew
Penning, Mike
Penrose, John
Pickles, Mr. Eric
Plaskitt, Mr. James
Pope, Mr. Greg
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Mr. Gordon
Prescott, rh Mr. John
Price, Adam
Primarolo, rh Dawn
Pritchard, Mark
Prosser, Gwyn
Pugh, Dr. John
Purchase, Mr. Ken
Purnell, James
Randall, Mr. John
Raynsford, rh Mr. Nick
Redwood, rh Mr. John
Reed, Mr. Jamie
Reid, Mr. Alan
Rennie, Willie
Riordan, Mrs. Linda
Robertson, John
Robinson, Mr. Geoffrey
Robinson, Mrs. Iris
Robinson, Mr. Peter
Rogerson, Mr. Dan
Rooney, Mr. Terry
Rosindell, Andrew
Rowen, Paul
Roy, Mr. Frank
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Bob
Russell, Christine
Ryan, Joan
Salmond, Mr. Alex
Salter, Martin
Sanders, Mr. Adrian
Sarwar, Mr. Mohammad
Scott, Mr. Lee
Seabeck, Alison
Selous, Andrew
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Mr. Barry
Shepherd, Mr. Richard
Sheridan, Jim
Short, rh Clare
Simmonds, Mark
Simon, Mr. Siôn
Simpson, Alan
Simpson, Mr. Keith
Singh, Mr. Marsha
Skinner, Mr. Dennis
Slaughter, Mr. Andrew
Smith, rh Mr. Andrew
Smith, Ms Angela C. (Sheffield, Hillsborough)
Smith, Geraldine
Smith, rh Jacqui
Smith, John
Smith, Sir Robert
Snelgrove, Anne
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Southworth, Helen
Spellar, rh Mr. John
Spelman, Mrs. Caroline
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Stanley, rh Sir John
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Steen, Mr. Anthony
Stewart, Ian
Stoate, Dr. Howard
Strang, rh Dr. Gavin
Streeter, Mr. Gary
Stringer, Graham
Stunell, Andrew
Sutcliffe, Mr. Gerry
Swinson, Jo
Swire, Mr. Hugo
Syms, Mr. Robert
Tami, Mark
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, Ms Dari
Taylor, David
Taylor, Mr. Ian
Taylor, Dr. Richard
Teather, Sarah
Thornberry, Emily
Thurso, John
Timms, Mr. Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Touhig, Mr. Don
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Mr. Paul
Turner, Mr. Andrew
Turner, Dr. Desmond
Turner, Mr. Neil
Twigg, Derek
Tyrie, Mr. Andrew
Ussher, Kitty
Vara, Mr. Shailesh
Vaz, Keith
Viggers, Peter
Villiers, Mrs. Theresa
Walley, Joan
Waltho, Lynda
Wareing, Mr. Robert N.
Watkinson, Angela
Watts, Mr. Dave
Webb, Steve
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Wicks, Malcolm
Widdecombe, rh Miss Ann
Williams, rh Mr. Alan
Williams, Mark
Williams, Mr. Roger
Williams, Stephen
Willis, Mr. Phil
Willott, Jenny
Wills, Mr. Michael
Wilson, Mr. Rob
Winnick, Mr. David
Winterton, Ms Rosie
Wood, Mike
Woolas, Mr. Phil
Wright, Mr. Anthony
Wright, David
Wright, Mr. Iain
Wright, Jeremy
Wright, Dr. Tony
Wyatt, Derek
Yeo, Mr. Tim
Young, rh Sir George
Younger-Ross, Richard

Tellers for the Ayes:

Mr. Alan Campbell and
Kevin Brennan


NOES

Arbuthnot, rh Mr. James
Atkinson, Mr. Peter
Bacon, Mr. Richard
Barron, rh Mr. Kevin
Bellingham, Mr. Henry
Benyon, Mr. Richard
Blunt, Mr. Crispin
Bone, Mr. Peter
Browne, Mr. Jeremy
Burt, Alistair
Carswell, Mr. Douglas
Cash, Mr. William
Chope, Mr. Christopher
Clark, Greg
Cormack, Sir Patrick
Davies, David T.C. (Monmouth)
Davis, rh David (Haltemprice and Howden)
Djanogly, Mr. Jonathan
Duncan Smith, rh Mr. Iain
Dunne, Mr. Philip
Forth, rh Mr. Eric
Fraser, Mr. Christopher
Garnier, Mr. Edward
Gauke, Mr. David
Grieve, Mr. Dominic
Harper, Mr. Mark
Hayes, Mr. John
Herbert, Nick
Hollobone, Mr. Philip
Hoyle, Mr. Lindsay
Jenkin, Mr. Bernard
Johnson, Mr. Boris
Jones, Mr. David
Kennedy, rh Jane
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Laing, Mrs. Eleanor
Laws, Mr. David
Leigh, Mr. Edward
Liddell-Grainger, Mr. Ian
Lilley, rh Mr. Peter
Maclean, rh David
Mactaggart, Fiona
Main, Anne
Malins, Mr. Humfrey
Maples, Mr. John
Mercer, Patrick
Mitchell, Mr. Austin
Paisley, rh Rev. Ian
Paterson, Mr. Owen
Prisk, Mr. Mark
Robathan, Mr. Andrew
Robertson, Hugh
Soames, Mr. Nicholas
Spring, Mr. Richard
Stuart, Mr. Graham
Swayne, Mr. Desmond
Vaizey, Mr. Edward
Wallace, Mr. Ben
Whittingdale, Mr. John
Wiggin, Bill
Wilshire, Mr. David
Winterton, Ann
Winterton, Sir Nicholas

Tellers for the Noes:

Mr. Robert Goodwill and
Mr. James Gray


Question accordingly agreed to.


 
14 Mar 2006 : Column 1365
 

Clause read a Second time.


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