Jonathan Jones

Tim Farron wants competition dropped from the Health Bill

Tim Farron wants competition dropped from the Health Bill
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Will there be further changes to the Health and Social Care Bill? Liberal Democrat President Tim Farron certainly wants some, as he told ITV’s Party People last night:

‘If the new competition introduced through this Bill is removed, then I think it’s better on the books than it is off it… What I want is for the Lords to propose changes that will remove the new competition elements from the Bill and I would like the Government to give way on those things. It's all to play for.’

last week

submitted an emergency motion

And on the Conservative side of the coalition, Earl Howe — health minister in the Lords — sounds a conciliatory note in an interview for the latest issue [http://www.politicshome.com/uk/article/47130/earl_howe_keeping_a_healthy_outlook.html] of The House magazine, saying:

‘A lot of the concern is unnecessary and unwarranted, but there are, of course, worries about competition law which we’ve got to sort out, and I believe we can. Shirley Williams has been tremendous in challenging us all along the way — with her immense experience, she’s very well equipped to do that. I see her a lot and I shall hope to talk through her particular concerns on this aspect of the bill… and I hope we can reach an accommodation.’

has got hold

‘If we changed or altered the Bill now, we would end up in a no man's land, and chaos.’