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West Lothian Question

Volume 514: debated on Wednesday 21 July 2010

My hon. Friend will be aware that the coalition agreement specifically commits this Government to establishing a commission to look at the West Lothian question. We will bring forward proposals in the autumn.

The biggest threat to the United Kingdom comes not from Scotland but from the resentment that people in England feel at the current constitutional settlement. My right hon. Friend and I both stood on a manifesto promise that we would stop Scottish MPs voting on matters in this House that related only to England. When will that happen?

As I said in my answer, a commission is to be established. This coalition Government, unlike the previous Government, are determined to deal with the issue.

Can the Under-Secretary justify to his constituents the fact that he will not take part in such debates and such votes when he knows only too well that his constituents depend on health service provision in Cumbria and further education support from Cumbria? Is it not right that he takes an interest in what is happening this side of the border?

I can assure the hon. Gentleman that I will be taking an interest in the resolution of the West Lothian question. The hon. Gentleman agreed with Lord Derry Irving when he said that the only answer to the West Lothian question was not to ask it.