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Standing Orders (Public Business)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:51 pm on 22nd October 2015.

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Photo of Chris Bryant Chris Bryant Shadow Leader of the House of Commons 12:51 pm, 22nd October 2015

I know clause 44 extremely well, but I am not going to let on to the Leader of the House. If he cannot be bothered to read his own legislation when it goes through the Legislative Programme Committee, which he chairs, that is a problem for him.

Although the measures seek to address one anomaly, which has been referred to by the right hon. Member for Wokingham, I believe that they will create many more. If Scottish MPs are not to be allowed to determine legislation that affects only England, why should English MPs be allowed to determine Westminster legislation that affects only Scotland or, for that matter, that affects only Wales or Northern Ireland? Plenty of legislation, clauses and schedules fall into that category. The Partnerships (Prosecution) (Scotland) Act 2013, for instance, applied only in Scotland but was driven through the House of Commons on the back of the Government’s majority. I tell the Leader of the House that this is a dangerous road to go down as it will set a worm of grievance into the hearts of many across the Union.