Britain Will Be Watching The Brexit Debate In Parliament

Often when Parliament debates matters there is no interest from the public. The matters are too arcane or affect only a minority of the population.

Sometimes an issue that affects a vocal minority captures the imagination of the wider public and the matter gets more attention than it otherwise would.

The so-called bedroom tax is an example where only a small number of people relative to the size of the population were affected.

But the issue seemed so unfair that it gathered wider attention. And that is not forgetting that it was good politics to argue against a government imposing harsh penalties on the least able.

But looking back over parliamentary debates over security, eavesdropping, and other important matters - people just didn't care enough to demand changes to what was proposed.

So the legislation gets its day in the spotlight and is then simply enacted.

And then there is the increasing amount of legislation that is drafted in wide terms with power for ministers to enact specifics at a later date.

This has been called legislation by stealth, and the objections surface and then slide away under the surface again, leaving hardly a ripple.

The last time I remember an all-out objection from the majority of the public was the proposed sell-off of the national forests.

The public objected and David Cameron's government withdrew the proposal.

With most issues though, the debate is a few hours in the Commons and then on to the next thing.

But now that Theresa May has agreed to a debate in the Commons over the course of Brexit, and while there is a legal challenge to the Government implementing Brexit without a vote in the Commons, one thing is certain.

We can be certain that the whole country will be watching the debate.

And they will not be satisfied with few hours debate.

They will not be satisfied with a few MPs scattered around the benches watching the process limp along to a foregone conclusion.

There is still a lot to play for. And the strange thing is that the mysterious Theresa May is ambiguous at best about where she stands.