Mr Redwood’s intervention during the debate on documents relating to the Court of Justice of the European Union, 11 June

Mr John Redwood (Wokingham) (Con): But does the Minister not agree that what we want is fewer judges because we want fewer cases? The judges we want are the ones who will uphold the sovereignty of national Parliaments on far more issues than is currently the case—

Mr Deputy Speaker (Mr Lindsay Hoyle): Order. I have allowed the right hon. Gentleman to intervene on the Minister even though he only arrived in the Chamber three minutes ago. However, the debate is about advocates-general, not about judges.

The Minister for Europe (Mr David Lidington): I would say to my right hon. Friend the Member for Wokingham (Mr Redwood) that we need less legislation at European level. We need legislation to be written as clearly as possible, so that there is less need for the arbitration of the Courts. Regarding some of his criticisms of the ambiguity and over-prescriptive nature of European law, I have to say that I have heard such criticism being made of United Kingdom Acts of Parliament as well from time to time. None of this is perfect. He might have missed the point that I made earlier in my speech that British business finds it helpful to have a European Court of Justice applying the rules of the single market with clarity and, one would hope, with fairness. There have been a number of leading cases in which the decisions of the European Courts have led to significant practical advantages and opportunities for United Kingdom businesses and business sectors.

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  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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