Motion made, and Question proposed,
That at the meeting of European Standing Committee A on Wednesday 6th February, the provisions of Standing Order No. 88 (Meetings of standing committees), so far as they relate to the adjournment of the committee at One o'clock, shall not apply.—[Mr. Wood.]
§ Mr. Teddy Taylor (Southend, East)
In this wonderful democratic system, we have two minutes in which to discuss a vital constitutional issue. Tomorrow, the Standing Committee dealing with European instruments will be given time to discuss a vital milk quota agreement which the Government say is damaging the country, and which they have said that they will fight all the way. Is it sensible or tolerable to consider the motion to extend the sitting, given that the issue was settled yesterday in Brussels? We, the members of the Committee, have for two days been studying an issue that has already been agreed.
Let me ask a second question. How can it make sense for us to agree to discuss a motion to congratulate the Government on opposing a proposal to which, yesterday, they agreed without discussion? Thirdly, will you, Mr. Speaker, look at the motion passed by the House of Commons on 24 October, which stated that if a Minister agrees to an issue without its being considered by the Standing Committee he must come to the House and explain why at the earliest opportunity?
Sadly, this is yet another sign—we have had two such signs already—of the Government's treating European Community legislation with contempt—
§ It being Ten o'clock, the debate stood adjourned.