Why me and my SNP MPs walked out of parliament today

13 June, 2018, 20:27 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Murdo Fraser

Mr Blackford asked for the House to sit in private but, after being rebuffed by Mr Bercow, he continued his protests.

The party's MPs followed Westminster leader Ian Blackford out of the House of Commons chamber on Wednesday after he was was ordered to leave by Speaker John Bercow.

"The Prime Minister silenced Scotland's voice, having broke constitutional convention and plunged Scotland into constitutional crisis".

The MP for Ross, Skye and Lochaber riled Mr Bercow after he refused to sit down in a debate over Brexit devolution, which he labelled a "power grab" from Scotland.

He said the people of Scotland had not been given the courtesy of proper debate on Brexit issues that will affect them during a debate on Tuesday night.

Speaking after the walkout, Mr Blackford said: "The Prime Minister gave a commitment that she would treat Scotland as part of a "union of equals".

The SNP claim the EU Withdrawal Bill opens the door for a Westminster power grab which takes away from the Scottish Parliament and undermines devolution. That is a democratic outrage. Yet last night she pressed ahead with a power grab in direct opposition to our elected parliament.

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The unprecedented event brought PMQs to a temporary halt as Mr Bercow refused his demands.

He used the parliamentary procedure to ensure the will of the Scottish Parliament is respected and that Brexit legislation pauses until the Scottish Parliament's motion is considered as the United Kingdom leaves the European Union.

Scottish Government ministers and SNP MPs were outraged when amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill related to devolution were passed by the House of Commons after just 15 minutes of debate - with Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington the only member who made a speech.

The passing of the EU Withdrawal Bill meant powers which were supposed to return to the Scottish Parliament after the United Kingdom leaves the EU would go to Westminster for a period of seven years, a move which SNP MPs broke with the Sewel convention that changes to devolution would not occur without the consent of the Scottish Parliament. She has completely ignored Scotland.

The Scottish First Minister added: "The decision to act without our consent, and the manner of doing it, will not be forgotten". But Scotland's devolved parliament, Holyrood, had rejected those measures last month with the backing of all parties save the Scottish Conservatives.

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has said she was "right behind" Blackford and accused Westminster of treating Scotland with "contempt".

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