Wednesday, 20 June 2018 05:24

TORY GOVERNMENT FORCES THROUGH VOTE TO SILENCE AND SIDE-LINE PARLIAMENT OVER BREXIT DEAL

POWER GRAB BILL EDGES CLOSER TO "DISMANTLING DEVOLUTION"

The SNP’s Europe spokesperson has criticised the UK government for forcing through a vote which “attacks the democratic process and silences parliament" from having a say on the final Brexit deal.

Peter Grant MP commented after MPs narrowly voted against Lord Hailsham’s amendment which called for the UK’s sovereignty to be respected by holding a vote on the final deal in Westminster before the European Parliament vote.

Following the vote, the EU Bill is a step closer to being on the statute book – despite the Scottish Parliament voting overwhelmingly, by 93 to 30, to refuse legislative consent for Clause 15 of the EU Withdrawal Bill.

The Clause would allow the UK government to legislate in important devolved areas including the environment, food standards, agriculture and fishing. The SNP were joined by Labour, Green and Lib Dem MSPs in voting to withhold consent – with only the Scottish Tories backing the power grab.

The SNP called on the Prime Minister to bring forward emergency legislation to ensure the position of the Scottish Parliament was considered.  

Commenting, Peter Grant MP said:

“It is scandalous and utterly reckless that the Tory government is even considering the UK crashing out of the EU with no deal. At a time when parliamentary process is needed the most, the UK government has forced through a vote which attacks due democratic process and silences parliament from having a say on the final Brexit outcome.

"The EU power grab Bill is now one step closer to dismantling the devolution settlement - despite the refusal of the Scottish Parliament to grant the bill legislative consent over the very real risk of powers returning from Brussels and stopping at the doors of Westminster.

“Today’s debate over a meaningful vote has shown once again that the Prime Minister is more concerned with an increasingly futile attempt to hold the Tory party together – rather than protecting the interests of the UK from the consequences of a hard Brexit.

“The UK government’s own economic analysis has shown that a no-deal outcome would result in a 9% hit to GDP in Scotland, and the Fraser of Allander revealed that that scenario threatens up to 80,000 jobs in Scotland. The amendment presented an option that would have allowed MPs to have the ability to prevent the UK crashing out with no deal.

“Instead, the Tory government chose to fight tooth and nail to ensure that parliament has no say on the final deal, and to remove the safety net that would have prevented the catastrophic consequences a cliff-edge no-deal Brexit will have."

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