Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Rifkind -"A Constitutional Abortion"

The FT reports : Conservative MP Sir Malcolm Rifkind as labelling Ken Clarkes proposal to address the 'West Lothian Question' a "Constitutional Abortion".
"This proposal risks creating two classes of MP. It would be a constitutional abortion. Either you are a member of parliament or you are not. If you go ahead with this, you will have 100 MPs - including those from Wales and Northern Ireland - who are second-class legislators."
This is the Scotsman who lost his Edinbugh Pentlands seat during the Scottish Tory wipe-out in 1997. Following the abolition of that seat in the Scottish boundary changes he was provided with the safe ENGLISH seat of Kensington and Chelsea in the 2005 election.

So here we have another Scotsman, representing an English constituency and apparently quite happy with the "Constitutional Abortion" that is the present devolution settlement. He complains that the proposal will create "100 MP's who are 2nd class legislators". Can he not see that is EXECTLY what the present settlement has already done, except that it is over 500 English MP's who are the 'second class legislators'. Their remit is confined to England only, whereas the 100 MP's he is so concerned about - representing Scottish, Welsh and Irish constituencies - can not only vote on, but take full ministerial responsibility for English only matters, but NOT for those same matters in their own constituencies. They therefore need have no worries about being held democratically accountable on those matters at all.

Now if that is not a "Constitutional Abortion", I don't know what is.

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