Monday, 6 August 2012

‘Unreformable’ Westminster Can't be Trusted on Constitutional Questions

Commenting on the announcement that plans for reform of the House of Lords are to be abandoned, SNP MP Angus MacNeil said the decision showed that Westminster was unreformable – and that, with the coalition making such a mess of constitutional reform at Westminster, they should stop interfering in the process of Scotland's constitutional future.

Angus MacNeil, the SNP MP who initiated the cash-for-honours inquiry, said the situation demonstrated that a ‘yes’ vote for independence was the best way to ensure a modern democracy for Scotland.

Mr MacNeil said:

“Nick Clegg’s announcement shows Westminster is unreformable and, with the coalition making such a mess of constitutional reform at Westminster, they should stop interfering in the process of Scotland's constitutional future.

"Indeed, this announcement raises questions over how people in Scotland can trust vague promises of more powers for the Scottish Parliament when the Westminster parties cannot even agree to reform the undemocratic House of Lords.

“This u-turn leaves Scotland with a legislature where we only have 4 per cent of the elected representatives and a majority are not even elected at all.

“The issue of reform of the House of Lords has been with us for well over 100 years and keeps coming back to the Commons, only to be kicked again and again into the long grass – and it is clear that a ‘yes’ vote for independence is the best way to ensure a modern democracy for Scotland.

“Scotland already has a modern, democratically representative Parliament at Holyrood, and it is there that all decisions which affect people in Scotland should be rightfully scrutinised.

“For parliament to carry out its purpose, it must act with democratic authority and integrity. The present House of Lords lacks of legitimacy because of its anachronistic and unrepresentative composition – yet 800 unelected peers still preside over policy impacting on Scotland.

“The constitutional change that is best for Scotland is to stop this discredited, undemocratic chamber having any say in the decisions which affect Scotland – and that will be done by voting yes in the independence referendum in 2014.”
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