HC Deb 20 July 1926 vol 198 cc1036-7
46. Captain CROOKSHANK

asked the Prime Minister whether he will consider proposing to the House a change in the present system of allocating to the Opposition parties the choice of subjects for Debate on all Supply Days, in order that the Government may themselves bring forward on certain Supply Days matters which their supporters have repeatedly asked to have discussed, and on which the Opposition parties have hitherto declined to initiate discussion; and, if so, whether he is considering the more frequent use of the arrangement by which one Vote can be put down at the beginning of the day's Debate and another at 8.15 p.m.?


The answer to the first part of the question is in the negative. Ever since the present arrangement was made allotting a certain number of days for the consideration of Supply, the Opposition has had the right to choose the Estimates to be discussed on those days. I have every sympathy with my hon. and gallant Friend, but, if a change were made in the present system, I am sure that he would greatly deplore it if and when the time comes for him to sit on the benches opposite. As regards the last part of the question, I would welcome the discussion of two or more Votes on allotted Supply days, but it is not a matter that the Government can arrange.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that last week there was an agitation from his followers for a discussion on India, and that India is being discussed to-day?


That is due to the courtesy of my hon. and gallant Friend.


Have the Government considered the question of reorganising the conduct of business in this House, by having a Committee system, such as every up-to-date town council has?


That does not arise.


Is it not in the interests of the Empire that the Colonial Office Vote, at any rate, should be discussed somehow?