Duties in connection with Article 50 extension

Part of European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 5) Bill – in the House of Commons at 9:45 pm on 8th April 2019.

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Photo of Peter Grant Peter Grant Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Europe), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Exiting the European Union) 9:45 pm, 8th April 2019

I am grateful for the chance to make a few comments on tonight’s debate. Like Yvette Cooper who sponsored the Bill, we will support the Lords amendments. From our point of view, they have tidied up some of the wording in the main subsections, and they have put the original drafting into more effective and tighter wording.

I want to pick up on some of the questions that have been asked across the Chamber. Has such a major constitutional change ever been rushed through in such a hurry? English votes for English laws is the most significant constitutional change in the past 30 years, and that did not even have an Act of Parliament before being put through. The Westminster power grab, driving a coach and horses through the devolution settlement, had 19 minutes of debate. The entire Scottish contingent of 59 MPs were allowed one word during that debate. We were allowed to say, “No”, and then we were outvoted. So the ERG should not talk to anyone on our Benches about the lack of democratic process.