HC Deb 24 March 1971 vol 814 cc529-30
35. Mr. Marten

asked the Lord President of the Council whether it is the policy of Her Majesty's Government that each of the regulations which will become effective if Great Britain joins the Common Market should be debated in Parliament.

The Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons (Mr. William Whitelaw)

No, Sir; but I can assure the House that if the negotiations succeed, adequate opportunity will be provided for Parliament to debate the implications of the Instrument of Accession.

Mr. Marten

Is this not a reversal of the sovereign right of this Parliament to debate orders and regulations which affect us? Could my right hon. Friend say that if we do sign the Treaty of Rome, we would then be able to debate or pray against orders and regulations made in Brussels?

Mr. Whitelaw

As I understand it, at the moment many of the Community regulations would be perfectly easy for us to accede to in our normal legislative processes.

Mr. Shore

The Leader of the House must know that an enormous body of continental law is now expressed in regulations. Would he consider publishing these regulations so that people in this country and in Parliament can know how large an adjustment will have to be made to our own domestic law to bring it into line with alien continental law?

Mr. Whitelaw

I would not go as far as the right hon. Gentleman says, but I will certainly look into the points he makes.