I disagree with NFU Scotland. I normally respect its views, but it has got it wrong, wrong, wrong on this occasion—I am sorry, but it has.
The SNP’s own website says that
“to protect Scotland’s interests ... the Scottish Parliament should receive substantial new powers.”
I like to deliver good news—the Scottish Parliament is getting 111 of them. I have another question for the SNP: of those 111 new powers, are there any that the Scottish Government does not want? There is no answer from the SNP.
We all know that, if the SNP had its way, it would give all those powers back to Brussels in a blink. How big a power grab would that be, ladies and gentlemen? Our fishermen desperately want out of the common fisheries policy and our farmers can have a better future out of the common agricultural policy. I remind members of my entry in the register of members’ interests. Who is the minister willing to betray first, our farmers or our fishermen?
This legislation adds a whole new raft of powers to what is one of the strongest devolved Parliaments anywhere in the world. It is not a lack of powers that the Scottish Government suffers from but a lack of ambition and talent to use the ones that are already at its disposal.