HC Deb 05 August 1947 vol 441 cc1296-7
Mr. Eden

May I ask the Leader of the House whether he has any statement to make about the Supplies and Services (Transitional Powers) Bill, notice of presentation of which appears on the Order Paper?

The Lord President of the Council (Mr. Herbert Morrison)

Yes, Sir. The Supplies and Services (Transitional Powers) Bill, which is being presented today, is necessary to enable the powers given to the Government for the purposes of the transition from war to peace to be directed towards the full mobilisation of the economic resources of the nation in relation to the matters to be debated tomorrow and Thursday. Copies of the Bill will be available in the Vote Office later this afternoon, and the Government consider it necessary to ask the House to pass it through all stages before the Summer Recess.

Mr. Eden

Naturally no one would wish to comment before an opportunity has been given us to study the Bill, but I think that, in view of the last part of the right hon. Gentleman's statement, it is only fair to say that if the Bill is as wide as he appears to indicate, it is not conceivable in our judgment for the House to deal with the matter this week.

Mr. Morrison

I thought there was a general impression on the part of the Opposition, and the newspapers that support the Opposition, that there were certain serious economic and financial circumstances with which we are faced, and that they would be the last people who would deny to the Government any necessary powers to deal with them.—[An HON. MEMBER: "Sensible ones."]—I quite agree with the right hon. Gentleman that it would be well for the Opposition to study the Bill, and then we can examine it. If it is necessary in the interests of the country for the House to sit a bit longer, we must sit a bit longer.

Mr. Eden

I am sure the right hon. Gentleman will understand that I said nothing which could be indicated as denying to the Government any powers for which they could properly ask. What I pointed out was that it is the duty of the House of Commons to give proper examination to any granting of such wide powers.