September 21, 2014

THE SCOTTISH "NO" WAS A VOTE FOR ENGLISH INDEPENDENCE:

The time is ripe for English devolution (John Redwood, 9/17/14, Financial Times)

The UK constitution was left unbalanced by the last Labour government. They expelled most of the hereditary peers from the Lords but otherwise left the unelected House largely unreformed. They gave substantial devolution to Scotland, less devolution to Northern Ireland and Wales, and nothing to England. They decided not to answer the so-called West Lothian question: why should Scottish MPs vote on English matters such as health and education, which they cannot determine for their own constituencies?

England decided to put up with the injustice in the interests of the union. Today there is a new mood abroad. While the majority of us would like Scotland to stay in the UK, a large majority of us in England now want devolution for our country too.

The easiest way to rebalance the UK would be to grant an English parliament identical powers to those granted to Scotland. We could either have an English parliament at Westminster, formed from the MPs elected from English constituencies, or work towards an entirely new parliament with additional politicians.

This way of sorting out the issue does not appeal to some in the Labour and Liberal Democrat parties, who rely on non-English MPs to give them more weight in parliament. They have come up with other proposals. But all now agree that there is an English problem.

It's a winning argument for the Tories to insist that the English get as good a deal as the Scots.
Posted by at September 21, 2014 7:54 AM
  

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