Posted by: secretperson | January 4, 2008

Should Salmond Step down from Westminster?

The Conservatives want Alex Salmond to step down as an MP because he doesn’t do enough in Westminster for his constituency. I for one respect Mr Salmond and his parties principled stance, not voting on English only matters in Westminster. This situation says very little about the Scottish First Minister, MSP and MP’s ability to do his job as an MP and much more about devolution.

The simple fact is that for Scottish MPs, despite their being payed and having the same voting rights as all MPs, many of the decisions that affect their constituents are taken in the Scottish Parliament. They simply have less to do at Westminster, without voting on English laws, and would have even less under the Tories English Grand Committee scheme. It’s no wonder Alex Salmond spends more time up in Scotland.

The Conservatives should not be attacking Salmond, but attacking the system that gives Scottish voters two representatives, one of which seems to have little to do. An English parliament, with a possible federal second chamber with well defined roles, would produce a fair system accross the UK. Then these questions would become irrelevant.

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