The hon Gentleman says that there is no appeal but in such cases human rights

The hon gentleman says that there is no appeal but in

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€30,000 and expenses. The hon. Gentleman says that there is no appeal, but in such cases human rights are safeguarded by the European Court of Human Rights. If our citizens find that their rights have been breached by the European Court of Justice, they have recourse to another court. Mr. Cash: That is a very interesting point. I do not want to spend the whole debate on this issue, but it is a fact that the European Court of Justice cannot be appealed against. Tillack went to a separate court. As it happens, we endorse in law the European Court of
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Human Rights in Strasbourg, but we retain the House’s sovereignty over the Human Rights Act 1998. I do not want to go right into the Tillack case, but I simply make those points. The treaty was conceived and born out of deceit. We know that because we members of the European Scrutiny Committee heard how it was bounced on our Foreign Secretary. On the way in which the treaty was conceived, and born out of the German Government’s presidency, I say: “Treason doth never prosper: what’s the reason? Why, if it prosper, none dare call it treason.” The fact is that the treaty is being ratified, and if the Bill is successfully enacted, nobody will be able to turn around and claim that it is treason, because we, as citizens, will all be bound under the treaty. It is not merely a question of whether our constituents will be adversely affected, although I believe that they will be. We are talking about much more than that; we will be made citizens of the European Union, with knobs on. That is another matter that ought to be of grave concern, but it has barely been touched on in our debates. I must say that the issue has not been properly reported outside the House. I do not need to go into that again, as I have made the point on a number of occasions. Nobody really knows what the treaty is about, and that is partly because of its complexity, but, with great respect to some of my hon. Friends, it is also because we are told that we must not bang on about Europe. If I am to be accused of banging on about Europe, let me simply say this: I will not apologise, because if I am banging on about Europe, what I am really banging on about—those who are listening will 11 Mar 2008 : Column 201 know what I mean—is the freedom of our voters to make decisions in general elections. I am talking about their daily lives. I am dealing with the questions that arise of whether they should be sent to war, whether they should be killed in Afghanistan, and whether we should have a proper relationship with NATO. I am also dealing with issues of over- regulation. There is scarcely any area where the European Union has not taken over. There are still one or two, but they are getting so minuscule that I ask myself what on earth we in the House think we are doing by allowing the Bill to be passed, and the treaty with it. Is Parliament to be reduced, by references to banging on, simply to a forum for platitudes and perceptions? No. We are talking about the daily lives of our constituents and we have an absolute obligation—a duty—to go on about it. I would like anyone to
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  • Fall '08
  • Finklerberg

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