Canlyniadau 21–40 o 15571 ar gyfer speaker:Tony Blair

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Iraq (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: It is correct, of course, that crime has fallen over the period of this Government, but there are still tremendous challenges to overcome, as we know. However, when I visited my right hon. Friend's constituency recently, I was able to see for myself the benefits that the antisocial behaviour legislation had brought about. His role in that when Home Secretary was of immense importance, and he...

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Iraq (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: What is new Labour is the fact that within the hon. Gentleman's own area there is an investment worth £485 million in the health service, which has meant that, for example, the numbers of people waiting for more than 26 weeks has fallen from 27,000 to nil. In relation to education, he has had, I think, six new schools, 16 schools rebuilt and 549 additional or refurbished classrooms in his...

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Iraq (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: Certainly, they should vote Labour. Also, as we can see from the investment in the school system in Sheffield today, there is now the possibility of making sure that not just those who are comfortably off but those who come from poorer backgrounds get the chance of world-class education. That is why it is important to keep the programme of investment and reform going, which will deliver over...

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Iraq (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: I thank the right hon. Gentleman very much indeed for those immensely kind words. I was waiting for the "but" and it never came, and I am most grateful to him. Let me say—although it will do neither of us good in many quarters—that I found him to be not merely a very good person to work with but someone who was completely straight with me throughout my dealings with him. I wish him the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Iraq (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: I thank my right hon. Friend the Father of the House for that extraordinarily generous remark. Mr. Speaker, if I may just finish with two brief remarks—first to the House. I have never pretended to be a great House of Commons man, but I pay the House the greatest compliment I can by saying that, from first to last, I never stopped fearing it. The tingling apprehension that I felt at three...

Written Ministerial Statements — Prime Minister: Appointment of Surveillance Commissioners (27 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: In accordance with section 91 of the Police Act 1997, I have agreed to re-appoint the right hon. Lord Coulsfield as a Surveillance Commissioner and, in accordance with section 63 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, I have also agreed to appoint his hon. Norman Jones QC as an Assistant Surveillance Commissioner. Both appointments will run from 1 July 2007 to 30 June 2010....

Written Answers — Prime Minister: Peers (26 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: As has been the practice of successive Governments, and continued by the House of Lords Appointments Commission (HOLAC), nomination forms for peerages are confidential. HOLAC publishes a list of the individuals selected for appointment as non-party political peers on its website (www.lordsappointments.gov.uk).

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: With permission, Mr. Speaker, I shall make a statement about the outcome of the European Council in Brussels on 21 and 22 June. I congratulate the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, on concluding successfully an exceptionally difficult negotiation and on an outstanding presidency of the European Union. Before the European Council, I made it clear that the concept of a constitutional treaty...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: Let me deal with each point in turn. First, I should point out that when the right hon. Gentleman quoted from the draft mandate for the IGC from the German presidency, he missed out the succeeding sentence, which is: "The constitutional concept, which consisted in repealing all existing Treaties and replacing them with a single text called 'Constitution' is abandoned." Let me go through the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: The former Chancellor of the Exchequer, the right hon. and learned Member for Rushcliffe (Mr. Clarke), who is very wise on this subject. He said: "some of the Eurosceptics will have demanded a referendum just about the date on the top of the piece of paper, but they are flogging away, I think, at a dead horse." Not that that discombobulated him for a moment. The Single European Act and...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: The detail of what was agreed obviously has to be negotiated at the intergovernmental conference, but the key elements have been agreed. In relation to the language in the constitutional treaty about free and undistorted competition, it was somewhat bizarre to meet people who said that they wanted the whole constitutional treaty to be scrapped, but that we should have preserved these...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: Of course, all the usual legislative scrutiny will take place, as the proposals will require legislation through the House. My hon. Friend is right that the work of both the German presidency and others to get an agreement is important. I did not pick up this point when the leader of the Conservative party was speaking, but he wrote an article the other day about what Europe should...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: I agree entirely with what the right hon. and learned Gentleman says about the efficiency of the European Union and the need for the rules to change. It is important that people understand that the expansion to 27 countries is not just a question of another 12 countries being there. Because some of those countries—no disrespect to them—happen to be small, carrying the burden of a...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. Incidentally, at the time that I concluded the St. Malo defence agreement in 1998, Conservative Members in particular said that it would effectively abolish our right to act independently, that, in particular, we would not be able to go into military alliance with America, and that we would end up with a European army superseding the UK Army. All those...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: Absolutely not. It is not merely the political declaration, which of course is binding on the IGC political negotiation, but it is also what I described as the overview article. I suggest that the right hon. Gentleman sit down and read it, because he will see that there is no question whatever of any country wanting to give up its independent foreign policy. A country like France—quite...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: Obviously, I cannot agree with my right hon. Friend on that. We have never, on conventional amending treaties, had referendums. We did not on the Single European Act; we did not on Maastricht; we did not on Amsterdam; we did not on Nice. We accepted that the constitutional treaty was in a different bracket precisely because it purported to be a constitution that governed all the various items...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: First, let me return that compliment to the right hon. Gentleman, with whom I always had a very courteous and friendly relationship. Even when we disagreed, I found him someone of tremendous integrity. I thank him for that. Of course it is important that we carry on putting the case for Europe. That is partly because it is important simply to understand that in the early 21st...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: The provisions for the enlargement criteria are more about making it clear that the existing criteria—the Copenhagen criteria—will be properly adhered to. One has to be practical about it, and when a small country is coming into the European Union, the criteria are still important and legally enforceable, but it is not the same as when a very large country is joining. What Europe is...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: On the right hon. and learned Gentleman's first point: yes, and we lost, too—so that rather makes my point for me. I say to the Conservative party: for goodness' sake get your act together in this area. The Conservatives fought the 1979 and 1983 elections, rightly, as a pro-Europe party. It is since they abandoned that and got this virus in their system that they have been out of power. I...

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Accounts Commission: European Council (25 Meh 2007)

Tony Blair: There will of course be ample opportunity, through the ratification process, to have a full debate on it. Why would we want to veto this treaty? It provides the means for a more effective working of the European Union. Let us be clear about this: my hon. Friend, and some Opposition Members, would call for a referendum even if we added a comma to the constitutional treaty, because what they...


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