Constructive obstruction

constructiveobstruction
Edinburgh MP Joanna Cherry has said that SNP MPs are routinely ignored in Westminster, and are impotent to do anything substantial to defend Scotland in the face of a Conservative government with an eighty seat majority. She cites this as one of the reasons why she’s throwing her hat into the ring as a potential SNP candidate for the Holyrood seat of Edinburgh Central which will be vacated by Ruth Davidson next year. Ruth is leaving politics to spend more time with her ego and her bank balance.

Other senior SNP figures such as Angus Robertson have also said that they’d like to be the SNP candidate for the seat. I’m not going to get into whether Joanna or Angus would be the better candidate for the SNP, I’m not a party member. However both of them are huge assets to the cause of independence, and both of them would be a huge asset in Holyrood. In an ideal world there would be some means found of ensuring that both of them could have seats in the Scottish Parliament. After all, there will be other MSPs who will most likely be standing down at the next Holyrood elections.

However it’s worth pointing out that when two heavyweight SNP politicians and their supporters start to brief against one another on social media, the only winner is British nationalism and its pals in a Scottish media which is always itching to highlight divisions within the SNP. So gaunnie no dae that. Jist gaunnie no. You’re not helping. Especially not at a time when others are doing their utmost to stir up divisions within the yes movement because their own personal agendas are more important than independence, and just before we’re about to weather a media shitstorm in the shape of an upcoming trial.

The role of SNP MPs at Westminster is a far more interesting question. Just what can a pro-independence MP achieve in a Parliament where Scottish representatives are heavily outnumbered, and where representatives of the Conservative majority routinely walk out of the chamber or heckly and barrack loudly whenever an SNP MP gets onto her or his feet. It’s not merely that the Conservatives have no interest in listening to the opinions of the vast majority of Scottish MPs, they want to ensure that we know that they are not interested in listening to them. In their overweening arrogance they don’t even bother with the pretence that the UK is a union of nations. If Scotland’s elected representatives are not supine and submissive, then they are to be treated with contempt in a very public manner.

Arguably, the SNP contingent was more powerful in the previous Westminster Parliament, despite the fact that it was smaller in numbers. In a hung parliament with a minority government, a determined bloc of 35 MPs could make a difference. It’s harder to make the case that a determined bloc of 48 independence supporting MPs – the 47 SNP MPs plus the independent Neil Hanvey – can make a difference when they’re up against a Conservative government with an overall majority of 80. The Tories know that too, and buoyed up by their landslide in England they’re in no mood to make any concessions to uppity Scots. They don’t need to care that in Scotland they stood on a platform of opposing another indyref and then lost over half their Scottish seats to the party demanding another referendum, and they don’t care. Scotland is merely an irritating noise in the House of Commons Chamber, a noise that can be drowned out with insults, or ignored with walk outs.

There are those who say that the SNP should boycott Westminster entirely. They point to the SNP walkout in June 2018 when the entire SNP contingent walked out of the Chamber in protest as Ian Blackford was ejected for refusing to sit down as he complained about the lack of time given to debate how Brexit would affect the devolution settlement. The walkout garnered huge publicity and a massive boost in the numbers of people signing up to join the SNP. It was seen at the time as a sign that the SNP was going to play hardball, and would make life difficult for the Conservative government. However that walkout proved to be a one off event, much to the disappointment of many within the independence movement.

SNP MPs could point out in response to calls to boycott Westminster that they were elected by their constituents to represent them in the House of Commons, and they’d be letting their constituencies down if they boycotted Westminster or persistently walked out. It’s a reasonable point. A lot of the work of the Commons goes on without the glare of publicity shone upon the main Chamber. There’s committee work, there’s constituency surgeries and interventions on behalf of constituents. It’s important that this important work where a difference can be made should not be thrown out with the dirty bathwater of the childish public schoolboyery that goes on in the Chamber.

However there are ways in which this important work which does have a positive impact can be protected and defended, while at the same time making a public statement that Scotland’s elected representives, and by extension the people who voted for them, will not tolerate the contempt with which they are treated by the Conservatives in the Commons. The Scottish national inferiority complex is a real thing, this nation has had long and deep discussions about the Cringe and its effect upon the psyches of countless people in Scotland. Witnessing our elected representatives being repeatedly mocked and insulted in the supreme seat of power in the UK only contributes to that psychological damage. If we seek to heal as a nation, if we seek to undo the damage done to us by hundreds of years of being culturally dominated and politically marginalised, one way to start is by adopting a policy of zero tolerance for those who refuse to show Scotland the respect that Scotland is due.

The arcane rules of the Commons allow Tory MPs to barrack and insult Scotland’s representatives. It seems logical that if the rules are stacked in your opponents’ favour, you should play by different rules. The rules of the Commons prohibit members from calling another member a liar, even when Boris Johnson blatantly lies. SNP MPs shouldn’t hesitate to call the lying liar a liar, and if that gets them removed from the Chamber it will merely publicise the fact that Boris Johnson is allowed to lie. There’s something seriously wrong with a rule book which thinks that calling someone a liar is a more serious offence than actually lying in the first place.

SNP MPs can show their disdain in many ways. It only takes a bit of imagination, and a willingness not to be bound by a rule book which sets up Scotland’s representatives for failure. They could stand and turn their backs on Johnson when he pontificates in the House. They could walk out at strategic moments. They can refuse to adhere to ridiculous rules such are not referring to other MPs by their names but instead as the “honourable member for Toryshire”. They could just call them by their surnames. They could refuse to refer to members of the Lords by the titles they insist upon. None of these things will change anything by themselves, but they send a signal that the SNP is not prepared to abide by the cosy regulations that sustain the British establishment. The key would be to find any means possible of being a nuisance, of showing that Scotland’s representatives are not prepared to play nicely with bullies. Adopt a policy of zero tolerance in Westminster, a policy of constructive obstruction.

SNP MPs could trawl that rule book for any obscure procedural device which could be used to embarrass or frustrate the Conservatives. They could seek out laws and regulations enabling legal action against the Tories. Even if a case is going to fail, the mere fact of starting it generates publicity and headlines. They could spend less time in the Chamber, and more time in Scotland, speaking about and publicising the ways in which Westminster is unfit for Scotland’s purpose. Above all, they can demonstrate that they have no intention of getting comfortable in Westminster.

Update 10pm: Just to add that Joanna Cherry has been in touch to point out that at no point has she briefed against Angus Robertson nor encouraged her followers to do so.  Am happy to clarify that point.


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62 comments on “Constructive obstruction

  1. stewartdredge says:

    I would hope neither Angus nor Joanna are briefing against each other and would expect that neither would. Gonnae no suggest they are…gonnae no!

  2. […] Wee Ginger Dug Constructive obstruction Edinburgh MP Joanna Cherry has said that SNP MPs are routinely ignored in Westminster, […]

  3. ron says:

    Alex Salmond made a big impact when he was an mp by studying the rules and procedures and acting in such a way as to obstruct a budget amongst other ruses. it can be done as you say with a bit of effort planning and co-ordination.

  4. David Agnew says:

    They were pulled up for clapping and cheering. They should keep doing it and all the more loudly. They should simply refer to them by name and leave out right hon Hell they should start just referring to them by their surname.

    Would the Mogg care to comment on…
    Will Boss Boris care to make a statement on…
    Would the liar in chief care to make a statement at all on being a liar.

    Withdraw consent and support for various things. No more taking a holiday if a tory is going on holiday. Naw says the SNP if the member for toryshire is off to Saltcoats, thats his lookout.

    The SNP to aim to misbehave and really get up the tories nose.

    All that theater means something to UK politicians. We should be ripping the pish right out of them.

  5. Bob Lamont says:

    An interesting proposal indeed… One of the Tory wizard wheezes I recall Mhairi Black recounting was a member staying in a division lobby hence halting proceedings until chased out by a sergeant at arms by sword.. There are doubtless many other such nuisances which could suitable wrankle the arrogance a bit further still…
    On the Edinburgh MSP issue, this should be resolved with the local membership rather than become a public pissing contest which only the media will relish and inflate.

  6. Liz Gray says:

    Apparently…. One of the rules is …..
    If an MP called out “I see strangers” the sitting has to be suspended for a time.
    It’s their own rule and could be used continually !
    It would certainly play havoc with the TV schedules.

    Another thing that has always bugged me is this bowing to the Mace and walking backwards before it…. Why buy into that rubbish,just walk out like a person

    The media was full of “SNP planning to disrupt Westminster” when they were first elected in large numbers and they’ve more than demonstrated that they can work within the system. ….
    Your absolutely right Paul,they should start disrupting that system every chance they get!

  7. All excellent ideas. Which will probably mean none will be tried. I hope SNP MPs read this blog.

  8. If only – but they are obsessed with taking the moral highground and being “nice”.

  9. Ken2 says:

    SNP MP’s will not be there, when the time is right to have another referendum. Support for SNP/Independence rising. Until then they have to be there to hold Westminster unionists to account.

    It would be worse if they were not there. People in Scotland should not vote Tory.

    There are roles for everyone. They have to wait and take their turn.

    Tennis in Scotland gets £4Million. It should be £12Million pro rata.

  10. deelsdugs says:

    Jings, just before I read this I was thinking about the groups of Indy people hellbent on demonising the SNP, the harm this is doing to the cause, the in-house fighting and the upcoming trial…it’s really looking shite.
    Wholeheartedly agree to far more proactive Scottish satire in the south, and to hell with the consequences. Are they going to get banned from the ‘big hoose o hell’? I doubt it. More stomping out, songs of ‘liar liar…’, accents that resonate with distaste…come on SNP, get yer act the’gither.
    You’re only in your job, cause we have put you there…

  11. Legerwood says:

    It is not just the Tories that walk out when the SNP speak Labour does it as well and on some occasions don’t bother to turn up. One example of the latter was the maiden speech of Amy Callaghan. Watching the recording of her speech I could see that the Labour benches were empty. It also has to be said on that occasion there was a fairly reasonable number of Tory MPs present for her speech.

    As to the Robertson, Cherry seat issue. They are two politicians of some standing each of whom have much to contribute in their own way. That being said why compete for a seat that gives you a position in frontline politics when you already have one and in doing so possibly deny block the return of someone of substance to frontline politics?

    That is a not unreasonable question to ask and one that, if not answered, lends itself to all sorts of questions about motives etc.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      I understood boundary changes were an issue for Cherry, but agree otherwise with the principle of your point.

      • Legerwood says:

        But the changes if they occur wont come into effect until the next GE which is 5 years hence unless of course there is a truly huge implosion on the Tory side and there is an earlier election. If that did happen it would be a quick election/short campaign so would the boundary changes still take place beforehand?

    • tarisgal says:

      Because I believe, as Joanna does, that the fight for independence will take place at Holyrood, not Westminster. Which means a QC will be needed more so in Edinburgh than London. She is placing herself for the fight. As Paul has said – there is nothing the MPs can now do in WM (legally, I mean) to win the case for indy. It will all be done in HR & Joanna’s skills will be much needed there. This is strategy at work…

    • JGedd says:

      There are apparently undercurrents here not so obvious to those of us who only see the surface. For a long time people have ignored any presentiments of discord. Never a good idea to try and pretend that it will all go well if we simply exhort everyone to pull together.

      Interpret how you may, it is true that people have different ideas of how to achieve the same ends. This happens with all political parties and what might appear to be initially common goals, if deferred, wil produce frustration and dissent.

      Gradualism, while seeming a good idea to some, might have been too gradual to keep restive Yes voters and politicians on the same track.

      I feared that this was a danger after the 2014 referendum if it took too long to get to independence and momentum was lost. Lecturing people and telling them to keep the faith will not work if it is faith that is being lost. It isn’t surprising, unfortunately, as it’s the nature of politics and all too human. There are going to be differences of opinion increasing among political representatives and wedge issues as well as ‘ events, dear boy ‘. In my most depressed moments I sometimes feel that we have missed our time. I hope I am wrong.

      .A headlong clash between Joanna Cherry and Angus Robertson does not bode well. A possible solution might have been to let Cherry have a tilt at Edinburgh Central as it is her territory and perhaps Robertson have a go at her Edinburgh Westminster seat when she stands down. However, I have a strong suspicion that Robertson’s ambitions do not lie that way.
      Both have strong support from diiferent sections of the SNP. Whoever fulfills their goals will probably determine the future direction of the SNP for good or ill.

  12. Gariochquine says:

    It’s a pity none of our guys seem to have mastered the art of the filibuster. This is something at which the tories themselves excel.

  13. fairliered says:

    I wish SNP MPs would disrupt Westminster parliamentary proceedings as much as possible. They despise us down there anyway, so let’s give them good reason to.

  14. Daisy Walker says:

    Since it is the place where laws are made, it seems only right and proper that those within should obey those laws.

    One thing they could do is take a cocaine detecting cloth into the Members only toilets area within HoC and wipe down the surfaces. Film the results. This – if the cloth react positively – would ensure there were reasonable grounds for suspicion and enable them to bring a sniffer dog to the entrance of the voting chamber…. just in time for a crucial vote.

    And while they are at it, its a condition of employment that certain industries insist in the employment contract that employees can be subjected to a drugs test – random, or where cause to suspect. I don’t see why MP’s (or MSP’s) should be exempt from this law. The SNP should propose it.

    And while they’re promoting all this clean living, how about them doing a Breath test just before a big vote and shaming the other parties to do likewise. Not sober enough to drive a car on the road = not sober enough to be voting or debating as an MP.

  15. Macart says:

    Well said Paul.

    The horrible thing though? Is that it needed saying at all.

  16. Stephanie Taylor says:

    Excellent post. Playing by different rules has been quite successful in the past-Robert the Bruce comes to mind. Diplomacy and chivalry just did not work well.

  17. I have often wondered why, when Boris Johnson-Cummings gets up on his hind legs at PMQs, our SNP MPs do not start barracking the instant he tells another lie about Scotland, its people, its Government and its First Minister, why they do not demand, all together and unanimously, to be heard, or rather for Angus Robertson be heard, demanding Boris withdraw the statement, correct his – terminological inexactitude – and apologise for misleading parliament, and when none of that works, start chanting in unison “Liar! Liar! Liar!”, refusing all orders to shut up, until they are all ejected en masse by the sergeant at arms.

    Regardless of whether they continue to serve on the various committees, they should not set foot in the Westminster bear garden again. Those of us who voted for them voted for them to overturn the current constitutional settlement, not to allow the Westminster regime and its institutions to continue to walk all over us.

    And no bowing to the Mace, as Paul says: a body which treats us with contempt deserves nothing but contempt from us.

    Civil disobedience has to start somewhere.

  18. jfngw says:

    Surprised one of them didn’t go for Edinburgh West, now there is a MSP that needs to be ousted from Holyrood. Not only would it give them a better MSP but would free twitter from his constant gaslighting.

  19. Robin McHugh says:

    Contacted my SNP MP this morning to draw his attention to Ruth Wishart’s item in today’s National that kind of concurs in parts with what Paul says in his article above.
    I’m afraid to report that although he responded quickly the suggestion from him was that most people don’t realise how busy MPs are dealing with constituency queries, attending committees and such like, and therefore are somewhat time restricted to be able to do as she suggests.
    I will say that he’s much quicker to respond than his Tory predecessor and does not rely on minions to do so on his behalf.

  20. Millsy says:

    Ask all questions in the chamber in Scottish Gaelic including PMQs ;

    Call Johnson out as a liar and a racist in Gaelic – let’s see The Speaker adjudicate on that ;

    Have all SNP members measured for a Saltire suit or a Saltire kilt to be worn in the chamber at PMQs ;

    Refuse to call blatant liars ( most Tories ) Honourable member -instead all SNP members hold up a photo of Johnson’s infamous bus with its misleading slogan £350,000 million during PMQs ;

    All SNP members to put on headphones in the chamber during PMQs ;

    Have the SNP members stretch out across all benches ( a la Mogg ) and refuse to move to allow others to sit ;

    Have all SNP members don Blonde wigs and give a Nazi salute when Johnson speaks at PMQs ;

    Have all SNP male members ( ladies may join in if agreeable ) wear kilts to PMQs and ‘moon’ Johnson as he speaks .

  21. fman says:

    yip, just gonny no do that. it wont win a single vote.
    .
    I got asked to recommend some reading material last week by a life long labour voter originally from the north of England after a blether and a grumble at my desk. she is now on the journey. sure of it. I couldn’t recommend much of the usual. i haven’t been able to for a while, tho i bet yourself, phantom power and BfS have a new follower now. excellent.

    • Petra says:

      The indyref2 site (inks) would be ideal too, fman, and on here too of course.

      • Petra says:

        FGS. Always in a rush …”links”.

      • fman says:

        all good sites. I was encouraged by the fact she had never heard of GERS or Barnnet ect. she felt it wasn’t her place to get involved in the Question, even tho she has lived here for twenty years. a quick description of Civic Nationalism pricked her ears up. I guess everybody has their own trigger.
        a friend from edinbro recently announced to me that he is coming over to Yes when he was up doing my IT stuff at work. he is changing career. he is getting into planning and his research for his latest degree has left him mightily impressed with the changes in thinking and practice around land ownership, management and funding models for infrastructure projects brought in over the last decade or so in Scotland. being the natural cynic that he is, nothing I could show him before could get him to budge. odd init?.

  22. Petra says:

    I like the liar idea. Not to be used constantly rather in relation to our devolved areas, such as the NHS and education (or a really important issue). If the speaker pulls them (take turns) up for this refuse to apologise (drag it out) and then walk out. If the media picks up on it, the lies would hopefully be exposed (maybe?). If anyone calls the SNP out for behaving in such an obstructive and ridiculous way they could then say that they were sick of it and have a prepared list of lies to rhyme off. Long, long list I know, but get in as much as they can. On the otherhand, if this tactic was adopted, the Tories may have second thoughts about lying at all. Cut it out.

    It also REALLY annoys me that when SNP MPs stand up, ask a question and then get hit with a short, irrelevant SNP Baad “day job” answer they can’t then respond to it. Left with their mouths agape, smiling or shaking their heads. The public of course is left with the lying Tories response ringing in their ears. Maybe they should preempt that initially by standing up and saying for example, “taking into account the NHS record in England is abysmal (include a stat/s), I would like to know” …. such and such. That approach could be used for all issues. You know like ask a question about Trident but make sure that you let everyone know how many accidents have taken place, associated risks, dumping of nuclear waste etc. Boris’s bridge. Start by outlining what’s been dumped in that area by Westminster, the amount etc.

    As to the Cherry versus Robertson fiasco I reckon, as an SNP member, that Joanna should stand back (she’s got a job) and get on with delving into finding a legal route out of this Union (talk to Bercow on the fly) and prepare her colleagues to initiate the “you’re a liar” battle at Westminster.

    • Legerwood says:

      Petra,
      Totally agree with what you have said about the SNP MPs using the Tories record against them as you describe when asking questions. After all the SNP are an opposition party in Westminster therefore it is only right that they highlight the Tories shortcomings in Government.

      Far too often the response to a question from the SNP is simply ‘your (ie the SG’s) record on police/education/health is woeful’. Even Boris Johnson’s reply to Ms Sturgeon’s letter requesting a S30 order was couched in those terms using almost the same language you see time after time in btl comments in the Herald.

      Much better to lead into a question highlighting the Tory Government’s record than provide them with an open goal for baseless assertion.

      It is also an approach that could be used in Scotland. The Tories are the second largest party but have no record in Government in Scotland but have pretensions to takeover from the SNP. Therefore it is legitimate to highlight their record in Gov in Westminster as an indication of what might be expected here if they were ever voted into power in Holyrood. John Robertson’s site provides lots of ammo to allow people to do that in any forum that presents an opportunity for btl comments.

    • Golfnut says:

      Johann Cherry has said that the key to independence lies at Holyrood, so that may be her reasoning for wanting to be there. Peter A Bell highlighted her comment in one his articles.

  23. Ken Clark says:

    Great to have you back, Paul.

    You’ve been missed, but at this time of phoney war, we should all perhaps take a bit of time out for ourselves and our loved ones.

    Sadly, there is a lot of jaundiced bile flying around, so a visit here is more than ever a must.

    As to the topic here, I’m not alone in wondering why the SNP endeavour to be so well behaved at Westminster. Do they expect brownie points, or stars in their jotters?

    Respect from their political opponents or the media?

    Seriously, I just don’t get it.

    Watching our First Minister on The Andrew Marr Show once again using the term, “legal” while discussing a future independence referendum nearly ruined my whole Sunday.

    I get a sense that Scots are losing the cringe you mentioned. I really thought the SNP had enough fire in their bellies to reflect that. Sadly not.

    As for our English neighbour’s enthusiastic willingness to throw themselves into a process with so many health warnings, perhaps some closing comments made near the end of Lucy Worsley’s, ‘Royal History’s Greatest Fibs”, episode one, explain it.

    They are a special people unlike any other, who will succeed no matter what. A belief hammered into them from birth.

    We Scots on the other hand? Not so much.

    • Cubby says:

      I also am fed up with independence supporters ( that includes the SNP ) meekly accepting the crap GERS deficit nonsense when on the telly. Challenge it – its nonsense – if you don’t have the knowledge to challenge it you should be asking yourself should I be representing the independence movement on this TV programme.

      GERS deficit is just Propaganda.

  24. chicmac says:

    Both Jackson and Carlaw have apparently issued a joint tweet which says that candidates for the SNP leadership are fighting like ferrets in a bag. Lucky for them, there was no such enthusiasm for the job of branch office manager of the blue BritNats in Scotland.

    A less agendised observer might conclude that, if anything, it only serves as clear evidence of the over abundance of talent at the disposal in the SNP.

  25. Petra says:

    The latest from Professor John Robertson.

    https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com

  26. Petra says:

    Not so “wee” Scotland at all.

    Scotland’s land and marine mass amounts to 55.55% of the UK’s overall.

    https://newsnet.scot/news-analysis/scotlands-land-and-marine-resource-base/

  27. Petra says:

    One for a laugh.

    Annie Wells getting “tore” into the SNP. We “go on marches”, so why don’t they organise their own, lol? Answers on the back of a stamp. https://mobile.twitter.com/AnnieWellsMSP/status/1231657736615669760/photo/1

  28. Ken2 says:

    Let the Tories do their thing. Until they are all voted out in Scotland. It is just disgusting. Migrants deporting migrants. Failed tax evading bankers in charge of raising tax revenues. The Brexit shambles upsetting the farmers and the fishermen. Some people never learn being taken in again.

    Life expectancy stagnating in the rest of the UK. The Tories killing off their supporters. The BBC licence fee fiasco will increase opposition. Daily Mail readers decreasing.

    Yorkshire tea got slagged off after a Tory posed with the teabags. Inundated with complaints.

    The better SNP governance in Scotland. Eradicating child poverty. Increased nursery care. One of the best education system in the world. More people go to uni than anywhere. 55%. 30% from school. 25% mature students. Life long learning. More unis % of population. (15). Colleges and apprenticeships. More choice over two years. 5/6 years.

    The SNP good governance has changed Scotland for the better. Built bridges, roads, railways and hospitals. Scotland is a different place. Low unemployment etc.

    Support for SNP/Independence rising. Scotland needs to vote out the Tories. That can be done. Independence coming soon. Westminster unionist intransigent and interference will be gone.

    Putin supported Scottish Independence. He called out Cameron’s duplicity and interference in the Indy Referendum. The lies, cheating and the Vow. Then the EVEL announcement.

    Never trust a Tory especially in Scotland. Thatcher illegally and secretly took Scotland’s revenues and resources. Destroyed the Scottish economy. To fund London S/E for votes in the south. Scotland outvoted 10 to 1.

    Devolution 2000 and SNP Gov can hold the Westminster Tories to account. In Westminster call them out.

  29. Flower of Scotland says:

    It’s about time this phrase “a union of equal nations” was shown to be wrong.
    Scotland is half of the UK. The SNP MPs are downgrading Scotland,s position in the Union.
    Unfortunately Wales and N Ireland are part of the Kingdom of England and the Union is only between the 2 Kingdoms of England and Scotland.
    Wales was annexed to England in 1284 by the Statute of Rhuddlan after a war.
    Ireland was annexed and forced to pass the Crown of Ireland act in 1542 and became part of the Kingdom of England.
    Scotland is not a quarter of the U.K. it is half and the SNP MPs should use this in the commons.

    • Welsh Sion says:

      Agreed that this is not ‘a union of equal nations’, but I do not take kindly nor from a legal point of view do I agree that my country is part of the kingdom of England.

      1284 – The Statute of Wales (or the Statute of Rhuddlan) caused the independent principality of Wales to the English Crown under Edward I. Although it is seen as the loss of Welsh independence, it did not completely subsume the country or much of its law into England.

      1400-1415 – Uprising by Owain Glyn Dwr, aided and supported by Scots and French

      1535 and 1542 – Laws in Wales Acts (aka ‘Acts of Union’) Wales annexed completely to England. Gets Parliamentary representation for the first time and the Welsh language is relegated to lowly status in that anyone seeking a job in this new ‘Englsnd’ must be able to speak English.

      1603 – Union of Scottish and English Crowns

      1706 and 1707 – Treaties of Union between England (Wales included under England) and Scotland

      1800 – Act of Union between Great Britain and Ireland

      […]

      1967 – Welsh Language Act mentions that any mention of ‘England’ in statute law no longer covers Wales

      1993 – ‘Acts of Union’ between England and Wales repealed by Westminster. Neither country in
      union with each other from henceforth

      1997 – Devolution to both Scotland and Wales within the UK

      Please note therefore that we in Wales no longer by virtue of Westminster Statute, consider ourselves to be part Of England. We are not a principality either and have not been so since the 16th century. Just as Scotland we are a nation – but, and again, not like Scotland, not treated as an equal part of this Disunited Kingdumb.

  30. Heartsupwards says:

    a little off topic but I am fed up with the eligibility to vote being inclusive of people born in the country of which Scotland wishes to vote itself being/not being governed by. The argument is that Scotland, in the present condition is, functionally, a colony of England. This is obvious to anyone with any cognitive ability. Why then are we allowing for the very people who colonise us to vote in an INDEPENDENCE referendum? Please reply with any argument other than they are residents of the UK. Please remember that any upstanding English born resident in Scotland should recognise that this is a Scottish decision and not an English decision.

    • Cubby says:

      My son was born in England but came back to Scotland with myself when still in nappies and is as Scottish as anyone. He is an adult now and has lived the rest of his life in Scotland. He would not like the idea that someone like you would take away his vote for independence. He would certainly not take kindly to you calling him a coloniser.

    • Welsh Sion says:

      Would you disqualify me and my compatriots who are active supporters of independence of both your country and mine (heck, I’m even a Member of both national parties but reside – in exile – in England) were we to be living north of Berwick?

      That’s not a Scotland (or Wales) I would want and I don’t think you’d want to cut off your nose to spite your face either, Heartsupwards, so as to have some idea of purity of race that has the sole say in the direction your county takes, were we to be resident there.

    • This country belongs to everybody resident here who calls it home. It’s as simple as that. We don’t want any of that exclusionary blood-and-soil ethnonationalism, thanks very much.

  31. barpe says:

    Heartsupwards says ” ……any upstanding English born resident in Scotland….. “-

    Can you please define what that actually means? I’m “upstanding” (I think), having lived in Scotland for over 65 years, and spent many of those years educating (mainly) Scottish students.
    Have I done enough for Scotland to qualify for the vote??

    Ridiculous post you made, Heartsupwards.

    • Bob Lamont says:

      👍👍👍

      • Heartsupwards says:

        I have to say that I am glad for all the replies , even Bob Lamont who only has thumbs. It seems that no-one could break free from “because if you reside in Scotland you get the vote” argument. Has anyone looked at the eligibility to vote in the EU Referendum rule? A very large contingent of Europeans were not eligible to vote in that one. Is anyone here aware of the voting stats on “English born residents in Scotland” voting results in Indyref 2014? Again I say, if an English person living in Scotland cannot understand that they should not get a vote in whether or not Scotland should be governed by an English government then their moral, civil and democratic compass is broken. I apologise if this offends all who have already commented and if it offends the majority of the Scottish Parliament but no-one has yet made a convincing argument why our genuinely beloved English neighbours should get to vote with everyone else in Scotland (and I do mean exclusively English born people, not any other nationality). I remain slightly offended by the above dead, sole argument of residency.

        • Cubby says:

          I was well aware of the EU residents not being allowed a vote in 2016. It was not right in my opinion. Two wrongs do not make a right.

          • Janos says:

            People who live here are ultimately those who are affected the most by any constitutional issues. Don’t seriously tell me you’re suggesting we go down the Tories’ ethnic nationalism route?
            Rhetorical question, because we really shouldn’t.

  32. susan says:

    Joanna cherry has every right to go for the seat and unless there is wokus Dei interference she should be successful.

  33. Colin McCartney says:

    absolutely agree with disrupting the commons – its a perfectly legitimate protest – perhaps the easiest way to do it is by calling ” i spy a stranger”. Google it, its a very effective way of putting the ” elite” in their place using their own stupid procedures.

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