» Thursday, March 8, 2007

Forthcoming Business

The Leader said that, on Monday, March 12, the debate would be: Estimates (2nd Allotted Day) - a debate on National Health Service Deficits (Andy Burnham for the Government), followed by a debate on Local Transport Planning and Funding (Gillian Merron). Details will be given in the Official Report. On Tuesday, March 13: Proceedings on the Consolidated Fund (Appropriation) Bill, followed by remaining stages of the Statistics and Registration Service Bill (John Healey). The House would debate Trident on a Government motion on Wednesday, March 14 (Margaret Beckett to open, Des Browne to close). Thursday, March 15: a debate on Widening Participation in Higher Education, on a motion for the Adjournment of the House (Bill Rammell). Friday, March 16 - not sitting.

Briefing took place at 15:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Trident Debate/Vote

The Leader read out the terms of the Government's motion, which had been tabled earlier and which would appear on the Order Paper on Friday, March 9:
"That this House supports the Government's decisions, as set out in the White Paper "The Future of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Deterrent" (Cm 6994), to take the steps necessary to maintain the UK's minimum strategic nuclear deterrent beyond the life of the existing system, and to take further steps towards meeting our disarmament responsibilities under Article VI of the Non-Proliferation Treaty"

Briefing took place at 15:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

House of Lords Reform Debate/Vote

The Leader produced a list of tables, analysing the breakdown by party, of the votes in the Commons last night. Drawing comparison with the votes on the issue in 2003, which are contained in the Government's recent White Paper, the Leader said that he found it interesting that there had been a shift in the attitude of MPs on the Government side. It had to be borne in mind that the total number of Government MPs was larger in 2003, while the Opposition (Conservative) MPs were fewer.

Briefing took place at 15:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

MP/Racism Comments

The Leader, asked to respond to an announcement that an Opposition frontbench spokesman Patrick Mercer had stepped down because of comments in the media, said that his resignation had been an appropriate step in the circumstances. Pressed for a further view, he said the comments were "dreadful".

Briefing took place at 15:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Cabinet/Policy Review

The Prime Minister's Official Spokesman (PMOS) briefed journalists on the policy review. He said that Cabinet this morning was considering findings from two working groups of the policy review - public services and crime, security and justice. In his introduction, the Prime Minister focused on the need to take public service reform a stage further, particularly in light of the presentation from Ben Page of IPSOS MORI who had led public engagement seminars across the country in five different regions, which culminated in his Citizen's Summit on Saturday at No10. Mr. Page's presentation highlighted that the public had seen improvements, but wanted to see more. People also wanted flexibility in public services, but were concerned about a post-code lottery, they also wanted fair services, but were critical of those who abused them. That underlying sense of fairness was a recurring theme in his presentation.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

House Of Lords Reform Vote

Put that Jack Straw was "fairly robust" in referring to the vote, and asked whether the Prime Minister thought that it had to be taken very seriously now, given the time for legislation to get it through the House as soon as possible, the PMOS said that the Prime Minister recognised that the House of Commons had spoken with a clear voice. Equally, the next step was the House of Lords, and we had to wait for them to speak.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Police Inquiry


Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

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