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[1st Day]

Part of Debate on the Address – in the House of Commons at 4:20 pm on 21st June 2017.

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Photo of Ian Blackford Ian Blackford SNP Westminster Leader 4:20 pm, 21st June 2017

I fully agree. This matter was much debated in the previous Parliament. It has demonstrated the hardship that many of my hon. Friend’s constituents will face, and those in other constituencies in Glasgow. It would be an act of compassion by the Conservative Government if they were to do the right thing and remove the threat of closures to the Glasgow jobcentres.

With the threat of a hard Brexit and the loss of access to our most important markets, our exporting businesses will not be feeling stability and certainty. “Strong and stable” is what the Prime Minister offered the country, but “uncertain and unstable” is what she has delivered. Nothing in the Queen’s Speech changes that.

That is most true in respect of the United Kingdom leaving the EU. This is the biggest issue facing the United Kingdom, and it will be the greatest challenge in this Parliament. A strong and stable approach might have involved the Prime Minister seeking consensus and working to protect the country from the most damaging potential impacts of a hard Brexit. That was, after all, what the Prime Minister promised us last year. Instead, we have a Prime Minister who called an unnecessary election designed to crush any opposition to her. Well, how did that work? Her gamble having backfired, she has—[Interruption.] I have to say that it is pretty remarkable to hear the gibes coming from Conservative Members, because we have a Government who are going to have to rely on the DUP to get any of their legislation through. When it comes to the position of Scotland, one cannot get away from the fact that the Scottish National party still won this election. Unlike the Government, we have a majority of the seats in Scotland—something that the Conservatives could only ever dream about.