CEP Press Release: English parliament is only answer to West Lothian question

! This post hasn't been updated in over a year. A lot can change in a year including my opinion and the amount of naughty words I use. There's a good chance that there's something in what's written below that someone will find objectionable. That's fine, if I tried to please everybody all of the time then I'd be a Lib Dem (remember them?) and I'm certainly not one of those. The point is, I'm not the kind of person to try and alter history in case I said something in the past that someone can use against me in the future but just remember that the person I was then isn't the person I am now nor the person I'll be in a year's time.

On Wednesday November 14th the the House of Commons Justice Committee of MPs taking evidence from invited experts on constitutional matters was informed by Professor Robert Hazell, the Director of the Constitution Committee, that ‘the closest to a complete answer to the West Lothian Question was a separate English Parliament’.’ It was a statement with immense political significance. moment. The Constitutional Unit, located within University College London, had been set up with Professor Hazell as its Director in 2000 with full government backing to address the complex constitutional issues arising out of the 1998 Devolution legislation which had set up the Scottish Parliament and he Welsh Assembly but which had granted no devolution to the English nation whatsoever.

The so-called West Lothian Question has become the most difficult issue of all caused by that legislation. The Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly have created a totally unfair and undemocratic situation for the English. Scottish MPs in the Union Parliament in Westminster are still entitled to vote on such very important matters as health, education and transport for England, even to be cabinet ministers of health, education and transport for England, while no English MPs can do the same on the same issues for Scotland. It has enabled Scotland to vote for free prescriptions for all Scottish people, free personal care for the elderly, no university fees for Scottish students and free bus travel throughout Scotland for all its pensioners. The Scots each get £1500 more spent on their health and education than people in England. Nothing has created more disunity in the United Kingdom and friction between England and Scotland than the West Lothian Question since the Act of Union of 1707, three hundred years ago.

When the Constitution Unit was set up in the year 2000 its Director Professor Hazell, in his ‘State of the Union’ lecture at its inauguration stated that an English Parliament was not the way to resolve the West Lothian Question. He declared that an English Parliament would mean the end of the United Kingdom. Now, after seven years of investigation, his influential Unit has informed the House of Commons that an English Parliament physically separate from the United Kingdom Parliament is the best way to resolve the very question that is creating tension and break-up within the Union. It is a political conversion of Road-to-Damascus proportions, and all the more significant and reliable for that reason.

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One comment

  1. M Anderson (47 comments) says:

    “The BBC reports that whilst Professor Hazell agrees that the “closest to a complete answer” would be a separate English Parliament, he notes that there are not any mainstream politicians in favour of such an idea and considers there is no significant public support for it”

    “no significant public support for it”?

    67% want an English Parliament
    An ICM poll commissioned by the CEP shows support for an English Parliament stands at 67%


    ICM November 2006
    In November 2006 ICM conducted a poll in which 68% of those asked supported the establishment of an English Parliament

    ECC 2006 (Mori)
    In July 2006 the English Constitutional Convention commissioned a survey to discover the popularity of the idea of an English Parliament.

    We were delighted that the poll showed an increasing concern about the English constitutional problem. In fact fully 41% of people now support an English Parliament as the solution.

    See the English Constitutional Convention’s press release.


    PRESS RELEASE: 8th JULY 2006

    New Ipsos MORI Poll
    The demand for an English Parliament
    Commissioned by the English Constitutional Convention

    41% in favour of an English Parliament.

    Britain wants UK break up, poll shows
    By Patrick Hennessy and Melissa Kite, Sunday Telegraph, 26/11/2006

    The United Kingdom should be broken up and Scotland and England set free as independent nations, according to a huge number of voters on both sides of the border.

    A clear majority of people in both England and Scotland are in favour of full independence for Scotland, an ICM opinion poll for The Sunday Telegraph has found. Independence is backed by 52 per cent of Scots while an astonishing 59 per cent of English voters want Scotland to go it alone.

    “68% of English want own Parliament”

    There is also further evidence of rising English nationalism with support for the establishment of an English parliament hitting an historic high of 68 per cent amongst English voters.

    “48 per cent [of English people] want complete independence for England…from Wales and Northern Ireland as well [as Scotland].

    Almost half – 48 per cent – also want complete independence for England, divorcing itself from Wales and Northern Ireland as well. Scottish voters also back an English breakaway with 58 per cent supporting an English parliament with similar powers to the Scottish one.

    Mr Hazell is a liar! The BBC is a joke!

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