Behind the headlines with Dewsbury and Mirfield MP Simon Reevell: England needs a voice for the whole country

DEVOLVING POWERS Should Scottish MPs have the right to dictate on issues like health and tax in England?
DEVOLVING POWERS Should Scottish MPs have the right to dictate on issues like health and tax in England?
0
Have your say

Two things have dominated the headlines over the last few weeks and both of them looked like they may have forced a recall of Parliament.

First of all there was the Scottish Referendum. The last days of the campaign were characterised by the leaders of all three Westminster parties doing a decent impression of someone in a panic whilst Mr Brown took it upon himself to promise everything he could think of to keep the Union together.

Further powers for Scotland may be all very well but the time has now come to look at a system where only England’s MPs vote on matters that only effect England.

There are those who oppose this – most notably Mr Miliband – but even some Labour MPs recognise that this is simply about fairness.

If Scotland is to have devolved powers of health, education and now tax, Scottish MPs have no right to dictate how those subjects are dealt with here in England. And Regional devolution is no substitute for this.

A decision on whether or not to pass powers to the English regions is one for the English to make.

We devolved powers to Scotland, not to Aberdeen or Glasgow. The equivalent is a voice for England as a whole.

I have been pushing this since 2011 and I am glad that its time seems to have come. How ironic if Mr Salmond’s legacy is an English parliament!

The second issue has been the so-called Islamic State. I say ‘so called’ because they are not Islamic and they are not a state. They are just murderous thugs who use rape, beheading and crucifixion as everyday tools of terror.

Now they are starting to feel a little of what it’s like to be on the receiving end and this week’s attacks by the US and five Arab countries are only the beginning.

In the end Parliament was not recalled after the referendum because the Scots voted ‘No’. It will be recalled before the RAF and the Royal Navy join in with the coalition attacks in Iraq and Syria.

I will vote in favour of the UK joining the coalition attacks. I shall do so because I believe it is the right thing to do. I know that the consequences for hostages may be dire and that is something that troubles me greatly. But doing nothing in the face of this terror would be even worse.