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Viscount Bledisloe: My Lords, I am under instructions from the noble Lord, Lord Carter, to close the debate at this stage. On such matters I am, as ever, the soul of obedience. I think that is a pity. I know that there are many Back-Benchers on all sides of the House who still wish to contribute. We have heard at some length from the heavy guns on the Front Benches; we have heard rather less from the Back-Benchers.

The noble Lord, Lord Boston, has prayed in aid the recommendation of the Procedure Committee. A decision like that is not surprising in a matter which is Whipped and when, almost in its entirety, the committee is composed of Members of one Front Bench or another. With respect to--

Lord Carter: My Lords, will the noble Viscount give way? Half the members of the Procedure Committee are Front-Benchers, the rest are Back-Benchers.

Viscount Bledisloe: And, my Lords, the Back-Benchers of both parties were Whipped. I gather that that is not the case today.

The noble Lord, Lord Boston of Faversham, says that the matter was fully debated by the Procedure Committee. With respect to the noble Lord, I confess, having been present, that I do not believe that it was. The noble Lord, Lord Chalfont--and I to some extent--put forward reasoned arguments. They were met solely with the response: "Well, it's in the agreement, ain't it?". If that is what is meant by being "debated cogently and thoroughly", it is not what those words normally mean to me.

I want to make three points. First, the noble Lord, Lord Strathclyde, has today returned to the concept of, "Oh well, they are representative". That is remarkable. At a very early stage in the Procedure Committee, the Chairman, the noble Lord, Lord Boston of Faversham, said,

that is, the draft orders--

    "nor those would support Lord Bledisloe's proposal is going for ... what has been called been called representation".

22 Jul 1999 : Column 1171

So the noble Lord said plainly that no one was arguing for representation. That was the way in which the Procedure Committee was conducted.

Secondly, I deprecate the argument that the "O" group or the Clerk of the Parliaments has examined the matter carefully. It is absolutely plain that that admirable body and that even more admirable person have skilfully put down on paper what they were told to put. They have in no way given thought to whether this is the right way of doing things. They acted as draftsmen, and they have said so.

Thirdly, at the end of the day, the question is: does the House do what is sensible, or does it merely say, "Two people have made an agreement. We have to follow that"? This House has a unique reputation among the parliaments of the world for actually listening to the arguments and deciding matters on that basis. I hope that on this occasion the argument will prevail over the wishes of the Front Benches. I wish to test the opinion of the House.

5.52 p.m.

On Question, Whether the said amendment shall be agreed to?

Their Lordships divided: Contents, 146; Not-Contents, 229.

Division No. 1


Ackner, L.
Addington, L.
Ailesbury, M.
Alderdice, L.
Allenby of Megiddo, V.
Ampthill, L.
Arlington, B.
Ashbourne, L.
Ashburton, L.
Avebury, L.
Baldwin of Bewdley, E.
Barnett, L.
Beaumont of Whitley, L.
Blaker, L.
Bledisloe, V. [Teller.]
Blyth, L.
Bridge of Harwich, L.
Brightman, L.
Buccleuch and Queensberry, D.
Butler of Brockwell, L.
Calverley, L.
Campbell of Alloway, L.
Carew, L.
Carlisle, E.
Carnarvon, E.
Carrick, E.
Chalfont, L.
Chorley, L.
Clancarty, E.
Clement-Jones, L.
Clifford of Chudleigh, L.
Cooke of Islandreagh, L.
Craig of Radley, L.
Craigmyle, L.
Dahrendorf, L.
Desai, L.
Devonport, V.
Dholakia, L.
Downshire, M.
Drogheda, E.
Dunleath, L.
Dunrossil, V.
Effingham, E.
Exmouth, V.
Ezra, L.
Falkland, V.
Fookes, B.
Freyberg, L.
Geraint, L.
Gibson, L.
Gisborough, L.
Gladwyn, L.
Glasgow, E.
Goodhart, L.
Gray, L.
Greenway, L.
Grey, E.
Halsbury, E.
Hamwee, B.
Hankey, L.
Harding of Petherton, L.
Harris of Greenwich, L.
Harrowby, E.
Hawke, L.
Hereford, Bp.
Holme of Cheltenham, L.
Hooson, L.
Howie of Troon, L.
Huntingdon, E.
Hylton, L.
Hylton-Foster, B.
Iddesleigh, E.
Iveagh, E.
Jenkins of Hillhead, L.
Killanin, L.
Kinloss, Ly.
Kintore, E.
Laming, L.
Lauderdale, E.
Lester of Herne Hill, L.
Lincoln, Bp.
Listowel, E.
Longford, E.
Mackie of Benshie, L.
McNair, L.
McNally, L.
Maddock, B.
Mar and Kellie, E.
Marlesford, L.
Mersey, V.
Methuen, L.
Middleton, L.
Miller of Chilthorne Domer, B.
Molyneaux of Killead, L.
Monson, L.
Montgomery of Alamein, V.
Mountgarret, V.
Napier and Ettrick, L.
Nathan, L.
Newall, L.
Newby, L.
Norton, L.
Ogmore, L.
Pym, L.
Rathcavan, L.
Razzall, L.
Redesdale, L.
Rennell, L.
Renton, L.
Rochester, L.
Rodgers of Quarry Bank, L.
Roll of Ipsden, L.
Runciman of Doxford, V.
Russell, E.
St. John of Bletso, L.
Sandberg, L.
Sandford, L.
Sandwich, E.
Shannon, E.
Sharp of Guildford, B.
Slim, V.
Smith of Clifton, L.
Strafford, E.
Strange, B.
Swinfen, L.
Tenby, V. [Teller.]
Thomas of Gresford, L.
Thomas of Swynnerton, L.
Thomas of Walliswood, B.
Thomson of Monifieth, L.
Thurlow, L.
Thurso, V.
Tope, L.
Tordoff, L.
Trenchard, V.
Trumpington, B.
Wallace of Saltaire, L.
Walton of Detchant, L.
Waverley, V.
Weatherill, L.
Westbury, L.
Wharton, B.
Wigoder, L.
Wilberforce, L.
Williams of Crosby, B.
Wright of Richmond, L.


Acton, L.
Addison, V.
Ahmed, L.
Ailsa, M.
Alexander of Tunis, E.
Alli, L.
Amos, B.
Anelay of St. Johns, B.
Archer of Sandwell, L.
Ashley of Stoke, L.
Astor of Hever, L.
Bach, L.
Bathurst, E.
Belhaven and Stenton, L.
Berkeley, L.
Berners, B.
Biddulph, L.
Biffen, L.
Blackstone, B.
Blackwell, L.
Boardman, L.
Borrie, L.
Bowness, L.
Bragg, L.
Brentford, V.
Brett, L.
Bridgeman, V.
Brooke of Alverthorpe, L.
Brooks of Tremorfa, L.
Brougham and Vaux, L.
Burlison, L.
Burnham, L.
Buscombe, B.
Byford, B.
Cadman, L.
Caithness, E.
Carnegy of Lour, B.
Carter, L. [Teller.]
Castle of Blackburn, B.
Chadlington, L.
Chandos, V.
Chesham, L.
Clanwilliam, E.
Clarke of Hampstead, L.
Clark of Kempston, L.
Cledwyn of Penrhos, L.
Clinton-Davis, L.
Cocks of Hartcliffe, L.
Colwyn, L.
Cope of Berkeley, L.
Courtown, E.
Cowdrey of Tonbridge, L.
Cox, B.
Cranborne, V.
Crawley, B.
Cross, V.
David, B.
Davidson, V.
Davies of Oldham, L.
Denbigh, E.
Denham, L.
Diamond, L.
Dinevor, L.
Dixon, L.
Dormand of Easington, L.
Dulverton, L.
Dundee, E.
Eden of Winton, L.
Elder, L.
Erne, E.
Erroll, E.
Evans of Parkside, L.
Evans of Watford, L.
Falconer of Thoroton, L.
Farrington of Ribbleton, B.
Faulkner of Worcester, L.
Ferrers, E.
Fisher, L.
Forsyth of Drumlean, L.
Gainford, L.
Gardner of Parkes, B.
Geddes, L.
Gilbert, L.
Gladwin of Clee, L.
Glentoran, L.
Gordon of Strathblane, L.
Goudie, B.
Gould of Potternewton, B.
Graham of Edmonton, L.
Grenfell, L.
Hacking, L.
Hanningfield, L.
Hanworth, V.
Hardinge of Penshurst, L.
Hardy of Wath, L.
Harlech, L.
Harmsworth, L.
Harris of Haringey, L.
Hayman, B.
Henley, L. [Teller.]
Higgins, L.
Hilton of Eggardon, B.
Hogg, B.
Holderness, L.
Hollis of Heigham, B.
Hooper, B.
Hothfield, L.
Howe, E.
Howell of Guildford, L.
Hughes, L.
Hughes of Woodside, L.
Hunt of Kings Heath, L.
Hunt of Wirral, L.
Hurd of Westwell, L.
Irvine of Lairg, L. [Lord Chancellor.]
Janner of Braunstone, L.
Jay of Paddington, B. [Lord Privy Seal.]
Jeffreys, L.
Jeger, B.
Jenkin of Roding, L.
Jenkins of Putney, L.
Kingsland, L.
Kirkhill, L.
Lea, B.
Leigh, L.
Levy, L.
Lockwood, B.
Lofthouse of Pontefract, L.
Long, V.
Lovell-Davis, L.
Luke, L.
Lyell, L.
McColl of Dulwich, L.
McIntosh of Haringey, L.
Mackay of Ardbrecknish, L.
Mackenzie of Framwellgate, L.
Mallalieu, B.
Malmesbury, E.
Massereene and Ferrard, V.
Mayhew of Twysden, L.
Merlyn-Rees, L.
Merrivale, L.
Milverton, L.
Mishcon, L.
Molloy, L.
Monk Bretton, L.
Monkswell, L.
Montague of Oxford, L.
Montrose, D.
Morris, L.
Morris of Castle Morris, L.
Mountevans, L.
Mowbray and Stourton, L.
Moyne, L.
Munster, E.
Murray of Epping Forest, L.
Murton of Lindisfarne, L.
Newton of Braintree, L.
Nicol, B.
Noel-Buxton, L.
Norfolk, D.
Northbrook, L.
Northesk, E.
Norton of Louth, L.
Nunburnholme, L.
O'Cathain, B.
Onslow, E.
Park of Monmouth, B.
Peston, L.
Pilkington of Oxenford, L.
Pitkeathley, B.
Plummer of St. Marylebone, L.
Ponsonby of Shulbrede, L.
Puttnam, L.
Ramsay of Cartvale, B.
Randall of St. Budeaux, L.
Rawlings, B.
Reay, L.
Rendell of Babergh, B.
Richard, L.
Roberts of Conwy, L.
Rogers of Riverside, L.
Romney, E.
Rotherwick, L.
Rowallan, L.
Saatchi, L.
Sainsbury of Turville, L.
St. Davids, V.
Sawyer, L.
Scotland of Asthal, B.
Seccombe, B.
Selborne, E.
Serota, B.
Shaw of Northstead, L.
Shepherd, L.
Shore of Stepney, L.
Shrewsbury, E.
Simon, V.
Simon of Highbury, L.
Skelmersdale, L.
Smith of Gilmorehill, B.
Soulsby of Swaffham Prior, L.
Stewartby, L.
Strabolgi, L.
Strathclyde, L.
Sudeley, L.
Symons of Vernham Dean, B.
Taylor of Warwick, L.
Teviot, L.
Thatcher, B.
Thomas of Gwydir, L.
Thornton, B.
Tomlinson, L.
Torrington, V.
Trefgarne, L.
Turner of Camden, B.
Uddin, B.
Vivian, L.
Walker of Doncaster, L.
Wallace of Coslany, L.
Warwick of Undercliffe, B.
Watson of Invergowrie, L.
Whitty, L.
Williams of Elvel, L.
Williams of Mostyn, L.
Windlesham, L.
Winston, L.
Young, B.
Young of Old Scone, B.

Resolved in the negative, and amendment disagreed to accordingly.

22 Jul 1999 : Column 1174

On Question, Motion agreed to.

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