Saturday, 28 April 2018 06:44

PRESSURE MOUNTS ON SCOTTISH LABOUR TO SUPPORT DEVOLUTION – OR SIDE WITH THE TORIES

HENRY MCLEISH CALLS FOR SUPPORT FOR STURGEON OVER EU WITHDRAWAL BILL

Pressure is mounting on Scottish Labour to support the Scottish Government’s opposition to the UK Government’s legislation to leave the EU, which threatens the devolved powers of the Scottish Parliament.

Stephen Gethins MP said Scottish Labour should heed the calls from former Labour First Minister Henry McLeish to get behind Nicola Sturgeon in resisting demands for Westminster to take over a range of devolved powers being transferred from Brussels after Brexit.

The Labour grandee said Nicola Sturgeon was right not to trust Theresa May’s Conservative Government on the EU Withdrawal Bill’s Clause 11, which deals with the devolved powers issue.

He said the UK Government had no interest in protecting the powers of the Scottish Parliament and everything “humanly possible” should be done to resist its demands.

The comments from Henry McLeish follow those of former Labour Minister Malcolm Chisholm who said that he hopes “the parties of Devolution will stand with Nicola Sturgeon in defence of the 1998 Scotland Act and the principle of partnership based on consent”.

Michael Russell has set out what changes to the Withdrawal Bill the Scottish Government would expect before it recommended that the Scottish Parliament give legislative consent.
 
Commenting, Stephen Gethins MP said: 

“The Tories think they can do anything they want to Scotland and get away with it. The pressure is now on for Labour - will they continue to stand with the Tories? The Tories' own economic analysis show that their plans will mean the loss of thousands of jobs and cost the economy billions. 
 
“Any attempt to constrain the Scottish Parliament’s existing powers without consent – powers championed by Donald Dewar and voted for by the people of Scotland – is a power grab and completely unacceptable.
 
“The SNP is not opposed to having shared frameworks across the whole of the UK, but these must be agreed by consent – not orders handed down by Tory Ministers.

“Labour must heed the views of Henry McCleish and Malcolm Chisholm and show support for our First Minister as she works to protect the powers of the Scottish Parliament.”

ENDS

Note: Henry McLeish tells Labour to back First Minister on Brexit bill 
http://www.thenational.scot/news/16190616.McLeish_says_Scottish_Labour_should_back_First_Minister_over_Tory____power_grab___/

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