about levels of goverment banner

About Levels of Goverment

What are the arguments around an English Parliament? 

Devolution to other parts of the UK has left an English Question. This is compounded by the West Lothian Question.  The Westminster Parliament no longer deals with issues such as education or health that only affected Scotland or Wales, because these matters had been devolved to the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly, and so Westminster MPs, whether from England, Scotland or Wales would not be voting on them. However, matters affecting health or education in England are not devolved but still decided at Westminster where Scottish and Welsh MPs, not chosen by the English electorate, would be able to vote on them. There has also been discussion as to whether Scotland and Wales receive more public expenditure per head than England.  The perception in the 2015 election that the SNP were making demands on a future UK Government may have led to an increase in English national feeling.

There is a Campaign for an English Parliament although it does not have support from the leadership of any of the main political parties, although UKIP had a proposal in its 2010 but not its 2015 general election manifesto.  The McKay commission appointed by the Coalition Government, proposed a vote by English MPs only on English only issues, so that the majority view of English MPs is known, followed by a vote of all MPs.  The Conservatives, as they have very few MPs from Scotland and Wales, would be most affected by Scottish and Welsh MPs from other parties voting against legislation put forward by a Conservative Government, have proposed English Votes for English Laws.  

The new Conservative Government intends to change House of Commons standing orders so that legislation affecting only England can only be voted on by English MPs, although this has already been challenged by Alex Salmond, as changes to Commons standing orders normally only come from Parliament and not from the Government.

16-18 Yrs Study Resource Best Sellers


Latest News & Features

CASE STUDY: The State Opening of Parliament

INDUSTRIAL BRITAIN: Download your free fact sheet on Queen Victoria

PROFILE: Margaret Thatcher, the first female British Prime Minister

Our Twitter Feed