English votes for English laws

I am delighted that the Scots have voted to keep our country of four nations together.

We now have a chance to change the way the British people are governed for the better.

However, I have had lots of letters and emails from people in the constituency of Lewes on this matter, many of whom are concerned that future changes giving new powers to Scotland could see England left behind. Rest assured there will be no one speaking up more loudly than me for English people to have a greater say as to how our nation is governed.

Indeed the Prime Minister is already tackling this issue and on Friday David Cameron, proposed that Scottish MPs should be banned from voting on English only issues once the Edinburgh parliament is handed greater control of tax, welfare and other key policy areas . This proposal to deal with what is called the “West Lothian question” has been supported by Conservative MPs for many years but unfortunately there is much opposition to it from Labour MPs and the Lib Dems, including Nick Clegg who has said he will not support the idea of English Votes for English Laws.

Despite this the Prime Minister is already putting plans together so that English MPs’ will have greater control over English Laws.

Since the referendum result, the Prime Minister has announced that William Hague will chair a Cabinet committee to draw up plans for a fair settlement for the rest of the UK alongside new powers for Scotland. On this matter William Hague has been quoted as saying it would be “inconceivable” to continue to allow Scottish MPs to vote on English matters. “It has been an anomaly for quite a long time. It will become indefensible with further devolution,” .

So what does this mean for us here in Lewes?

It means that Conservative MPs are working hard to make sure England is only run by those Members of Parliament elected by English constituencies and as Labour and the Lib Dems are not keen to see this happen it is down to the Conservatives to make this happen.

I am delighted the union is staying together but it must be remembered that England is a key part of that union. I am delighted the Prime Minister is ensuring that more powers for Scotland will also ensure more powers for England.

Maria Caulfield