April 24, 2006

The English parliament

An interesting article on the West Lothian Question, and why Labour will never attempt to sort out the massively scewed system that they put in place.
The Scots have their own parliament. The Welsh have their national assembly. But the English have only Westminster - where Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish MPs wield over 100 crucial votes, far more than Tony Blair's majority of 69. If you count only the English MPs in Westminster, Labour's majority shrinks to around 30.
There is no way that New Labour will ever give up that many seats voluntarily. It was was created purely for the purpose of gaining and retaining power, anything that got in the way (such as overt socialism) was dumped. But they will eventually loose (unless they trigger the Civil Contingencies Act or Leg/Reg) and so the tables will turn. As by solving the West Lothian Question the Tories would effectively gain as many seats as Labour stands to loose, so they are going to do something. Probably an English Parliament, as it will give them a legislature where they are much more likely to get lots of seats just as New Labour choise to Devolve power to Scotland and Wales only as it is in these that they are likely to get the more seats than an English parliament.

So the English Parliament is probably going to come in about 10 years (Gordon Brown will almost certainly get one term thanks to the current pro-labour bias in the First Past the Post system), no matter if it is the best solution or not since it will give the ruling party the biggest advantage.


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