Article 50

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:39 pm on 24th January 2017.

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Photo of David Davis David Davis The Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union 12:39 pm, 24th January 2017

If I remember correctly, the Supreme Court said of the Sewel convention that it was not for the judges to decide. I listened last week as the Scottish Government Minister presented at great length the arguments in their paper. As I said earlier to one of the hon. Gentleman’s colleagues, there are bits we disagree with and bits we absolutely agree with—for me, the most obvious one is the protection of employment law, which I take very seriously and on which we are absolutely in the same place. I and others on the Joint Ministerial Committee discussed with the Minister the issue of devolution, and the clear point was that no existing devolved powers were to be retracted. Of course, that is not going to happen, but we also have to think, in rational terms and in the interests of the Scottish people and citizens of the UK more widely, about where the best place is to make decisions. In most cases, I would prefer to devolve powers, but in some circumstances that is not practical. We have to do what is right for the people, not what suits our political interest.