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Main power in connection with other separation issues

Part of European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:39 pm on 8th January 2020.

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Photo of Joanna Cherry Joanna Cherry Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Justice and Home Affairs), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 12:39 pm, 8th January 2020

I have to say that I think the ship has sailed on that, because of the outcome of the election in England, but the ship has not sailed on Scotland’s constitutional future, because, like it or not, the Conservative party was reduced to a rump of representation in Scotland at the general election and my party won 47 of the 59 seats. It is surely a matter of concern in a democracy that is not a unitary state but consists of several nations that no matter how many amendments I and my colleagues table to the Bill, and probably every other Bill in this Session, we are unlikely to achieve a single amendment.

Rather than the braying and jeering that occurred when the leader of my group, my right hon. Friend Ian Blackford, got up to ask his questions this afternoon, I suggest to those on the Government Benches that if they really believe in preserving the Union of the United Kingdom they might want to show a little more respect, not necessarily to me or my right hon. Friend, but to those who sent us here to advocate what the majority of people in Scotland want—and, whether those on the Government Benches like it or not, the majority of people in Scotland do not want to leave the European Union but want a second opportunity to look at Scotland’s constitutional future in the light of England’s decision to leave the European Union. I defy any democrat to say that that is not a reasonable position. I gently suggest to those on the Government Benches that jeering at the representatives of voters in Scotland, shouting us down and rubbishing our legitimate concerns is not a sustainable position for the next five years.