Close of play…

So… the Daylight Saving Bill didn’t make it; it was talked out by a handful who opposed it. I don’t claim to understand the rules of cricket, but I think it’s roughly along the same lines. You can be winning, but not win in the end because you run out of time? Even though your numbers are higher than the other guys? Is that right?

The Live Music Bill, however, despite not being debated, went through on the nod. I think it was the only one of the 60 or so Private Members’ Bills on the Order Paper today to get through. The others will be listed for another day, as will the Daylight Saving Bill, but again, most of them will be too far down the list to get a hearing. In fact many MPs asked for their Bills to be listed again ‘Friday next’ when I don’t think the House is even sitting.

At the end of the parliamentary session, around Easter, they’ll fall, and the sponsors only hope is that someone who does well in the Private Members’ Bill ballot next year takes it up. Or, of course, that the Government implements it in another form.

The Live Music Bill now has to go back to the Lords where it started, because it was slightly amended in the Commons, but that should be a formality, and then it will go for Royal Assent.

Being in Westminster today was in some ways a waste of time. I didn’t take part in the debate because I didn’t want to prolong it. My votes on closure motions, to move things along, ended up being futile because the Bill was still talked out. And my vote wasn’t needed for the Live Music Bill either. Perhaps my time would have been better spent in Bristol, where the shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna was doing a series of visits… But the trouble with Fridays is, you never know how it will pan out, so you have to rally round and play your part, just in case you’re needed.

I’m back in Bristol now. GC tonight – ie the monthly meeting of the Bristol East Labour Party – and campaigning in Stockwood tomorrow!

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