Today’s Daily Mail has strongly criticised David Cameron’s reported plans for Scottish MPs to be barred from voting on legislation that only affects England (or Wales). "Yet again, David Cameron highlights a huge problem caused by the Labour bull’s rampage through the china shop of the constitution," it editorialises, "and yet again, his ‘solution’ throws up more questions than it answers."
The Mail finds the Tory plan "defeatist":
"True, the Tories have done very badly in Scotland for many years. But don’t pendulums swing back? Cameron and Co may yet be glad of Scottish votes – and Scottish talent – to shore up a Tory majority in the Commons. More pertinently, the Tories have always been the party of the union. If they are no longer that, then what do they stand for? The danger is that Mr Cameron’s plans will only hasten the damaging break-up of a united kingdom, so recklessly begun by Mr Blair. It is up to responsible politicians to seek a more constructive solution."
Members of the Scottish Party are also furious at the London party’s plan and – as with the fishing policy – are complaining about a lack of consultation.
Dr Liam Fox appeared to rebuke Alan Duncan for his ‘almost impossible’ to have a Scottish PM remarks. The Shadow Defence Secretary told the Daily Mail:
"The Conservative Party needs to remember that it is a Unionist Party. This is a constitutional debate that needs to be seen in those terms. It it becomes used for short term knockabout it could have consequences for the cohesion of the UK."
Sir Malcolm Rifkind, former Scottish Secretary, said it was "daft" to say that it was unconstitutional to have a Scottish MP as Prime Minister.
The England-Scotland relationship is one of the topics in this month’s ConservativeHome survey of grassroots opinion. If you haven’t had your say yet please click here.