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Mr. Bernard Jenkin: Will the hon. Gentleman give way?

Mr. Wallace: I shall give way in a moment.

The Government are not about to launch on the people of Scotland or the United Kingdom a complete bolt from the blue that that has not been previously trailed.

Mr. Ancram: How do we know?

Mr. Wallace: The right hon. Gentleman asks how we know. It was made perfectly clear in the election manifestos of both the Labour party and the Liberal Democrats that proposals for a Scottish Parliament would be firmly rooted in and based on the workings of the Scottish Constitutional Convention which, let it be remembered, was not a creature of either the Labour party or the Scottish Liberal Democrats. It reflected a very broad consensus in Scotland, including local authorities, Churches, trade unions, ethnic groups and Scottish language groups--perhaps the broadest-based civic representation in Scotland this century.

Mr. Bernard Jenkin: Does the hon. Gentleman believe that, as a result of the convention, the logical consequence of a Scottish Parliament is the reduction in Scottish representation here at Westminster? That is something that the Government deny because it is not convenient for their party representation in the House. Their proposals amount to the gerrymandering of the British constitution in their favour. I congratulate the hon. Gentleman on his honesty.

Mr. Wallace: I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for his congratulations, but what he said proves that he has not read the proposals of the Scottish Constitutional Convention. The convention specifically did not address the issue of the number of seats at Westminster, because that is a matter for Westminster and not for the Scottish

4 Jun 1997 : Column 412

Parliament. The hon. Gentleman is right to say that the Liberal Democrats endorse what the Kilbrandon commission said in 1970 or 1971 about the reduction in the number of Scottish Members of Parliament. The Labour party does not agree with that position, but there we differ. The Scottish Constitutional Convention made no recommendation one way or the other.

Mr. Grieve: The hon. Gentleman said that the issue was a matter for Westminster. How can it be a matter only for Westminster unless we also sort out who at Westminster will decide it--the United Kingdom Members or the English Members?

Mr. Wallace: It is self-evident that the composition of the House must be a matter for the House and all its Members. The hon. Gentleman mentioned the wider UK dimension and asked how English Members would have a chance to take part in that wider dimension. That is self-evident, too, if he gives it one moment's thought. When the Bill for a Scottish Parliament or a Welsh Assembly comes before the House, hon. Members from all parts of the United Kingdom--Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland--will all have an opportunity to take part.

The Parliament of the United Kingdom is constituted--albeit that my party believes that it is constituted unfairly because of the electoral system, but that is the system that we operate--on the arguments that were put before the electorate and determined on 1 May. The overwhelming majority of the British people from Scotland, England and Wales voted on 1 May for parties that were committed to substantial constitutional reform, including Parliaments for Scotland and Wales within the United Kingdom. The representatives of the people will make the decisions and scrutinise the Bill when it comes before the House.

Mr. Garnier: The Bill mentions the Government's proposals for a Scottish Parliament, and the hon. Gentleman mentioned the Scottish Constitutional Convention paper. Would it not have been helpful for the public if a version or precis of the paper had been attached to the Bill as a schedule, so that in our debate on the referendum this week all those who do not have the hon. Gentleman's learning could understand what he was on about?

Mr. Wallace: I am grateful to the hon. and learned Gentleman. Not only has he clearly not read the Scottish Constitutional Convention proposals, but he has clearly not read the Bill. The fact that he is only now coming alive to the issue shows that he has not examined the proposals. If the referendum happens, the ballot paper to be put before the electorate will say:


Those proposals, as has been made clear, will be published in a White Paper. That issue was raised earlier at Prime Minister's questions. I recall the Prime Minister saying that the Bill would be published and I realised at the time that he was making a mistake. I do not know why he did not own up to the mistake. At an early stage in his premiership, he has forgotten the basic rule--when one is in a hole, stop digging and start climbing. Nevertheless, all of us who have followed the debate knew that he meant that a White Paper would be the basis for the referendum.

4 Jun 1997 : Column 413

The Minister has not answered the question about what could happen if there was a yes, no vote. I accept that we should approach the issue in a spirit of optimism, to use the Minister's words. He has been assured that my party will campaign, if amendment No. 87 is not successful, for a yes, yes outcome. The Herald vote today was a 2:1 yes--but only 53 per cent. were in favour of the tax-varying powers. For me, that is not a sufficient cushion of comfort. It puts us on notice that we shall have to argue for those powers.

There is a good argument for those powers, but I believe that the Government are entering dangerous territory and taking a gamble. It would be better if the two questions were consolidated into one. As my hon. Friend the Member for Edinburgh, West (Mr. Gorrie) and the hon. Member for Falkirk, West pointed out, there is no party in Scotland, and no body within the home rule movement in Scotland, that argues for the yes, no option that will appear on the ballot paper--a Scottish Parliament without tax-varying powers.

A Government who believe sincerely that the best solution for the government of Scotland is a Scottish Parliament with tax-varying powers are taking a gamble in allowing the possibility--let us put it no higher than that for the time being--of an outcome involving a Scottish Parliament without taxation powers, for which the Government will say they are prepared to legislate--

It being half-past Four o'clock, The Chairman put the Question necessary to dispose of the business to be concluded at that hour.

Question put, That the amendment be made:--

The Committee divided: Ayes 70, Noes 344.

Division No. 10
[4.30 pm


AYES


Allan, Richard (Shef'ld Hallam)
Ashdown, Rt Hon Paddy
Baker, Norman
Ballard, Mrs Jackie
Beith, Rt Hon A J
Brand, Dr Peter
Brazier, Julian
Breed, Colin
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)
Burstow, Paul
Cable, Dr Vincent
Campbell, Menzies (NE Fife)
Chidgey, David
Chope, Christopher
Cotter, Brian
Cunningham, Ms Roseanna
(Perth)
Dafis, Cynog
Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Duncan Smith, Iain
Evans, Nigel
Ewing, Mrs Margaret
Fabricant, Michael
Fearn, Ronnie
Forth, Eric
Foster, Don (Bath)
Garnier, Edward
Gill, Christopher
Gorman, Mrs Teresa
Grieve, Dominic
Hancock, Mike
Harris, Dr Evan
Harvey, Nick
Hayes, John
Heath, David (Somerton)
Hughes, Simon (Southwark N)
Hunter, Andrew
Jenkin, Bernard (N Essex)
Jones, Ieuan Wyn (Ynys Mon)
Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)
Keetch, Paul
Kennedy, Charles
(Ross Skye & Inverness W)
Kirkwood, Archy
Livsey, Richard
McIntosh, Miss Anne
Maclennan, Robert
Mates, Michael
Michie, Mrs Ray (Argyll Bute)
Moore, Michael
Morgan, Alasdair (Galloway)
Moss, Malcolm
Oaten, Mark
Öpik, Lembit
Rendel, David
Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Salmond, Alex
Sanders, Adrian
Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge)
Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns)
Swinney, John
Taylor, Matthew
(Truro & St Austell)
Taylor, Sir Teddy
Tonge, Dr Jenny
Tyler, Paul
Viggers, Peter
Wallace, James
Waterson, Nigel
Webb, Steven
Welsh, Andrew
Wigley, Dafydd
Willis, Phil

Tellers for the Ayes:


Mr. Andrew Stunell and
Mr. Donald Gorrie.


NOES


Abbott, Ms Diane
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE)
Allen, Graham (Nottingham N)
Anderson, Donald (Swansea E)
Anderson, Janet (Ros'dale)
Ashton, Joe
Atherton, Ms Candy
Atkins, Ms Charlotte
Austin, John
Banks, Tony
Barnes, Harry
Barron, Kevin
Battle, John
Bayley, Hugh
Beard, Nigel
Beckett, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne (Aberd'n S)
Bell, Stuart (Middlesbrough)
Benn, Rt Hon Tony
Benton, Joe
Berry, Roger
Best, Harold
Betts, Clive
Blackman, Mrs Liz
Blears, Ms Hazel
Blizzard, Robert
Bradley, Keith (Withington)
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin)
Brake, Thomas
Brinton, Mrs Helen
Brown, Rt Hon Gordon
(Dunfermline E)
Brown, Rt Hon Nick
(Newcastle E & Wallsend)
Brown, Russell (Dumfries)
Browne, Desmond (Kilmarnock)
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Butler, Christine
Byers, Stephen
Caborn, Richard
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth)
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V)
Campbell-Savours, Dale
Cann, Jamie
Caplin, Ivor
Casale, Roger
Caton, Martin
Cawsey, Ian
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S)
Chaytor, David
Chisholm, Malcolm
Clapham, Michael
Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields)
Clark, Dr Lynda
(Edinburgh Pentlands)
Clark, Paul (Gillingham)
Clarke, Charles (Norwich S)
Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)
Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge)
Clelland, David
Clwyd, Mrs Ann
Coaker, Vernon
Coffey, Ms Ann
Cohen, Harry
Coleman, Iain
(Hammersmith & Fulham)
Connarty, Michael
Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Cooper, Ms Yvette
Corbett, Robin
Corbyn, Jeremy
Corston, Ms Jean
Cranston, Ross
Crausby, David
Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Cryer, John (Hornchurch)
Cummings, John
Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Curtis-Thomas, Ms Clare
Dalyell, Tam
Darling, Rt Hon Alistair
Darvill, Keith
Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Davies, Geraint (Croydon C)
Davies, Rt Hon Ron (Caerphilly)
Dawson, Hilton
Dean, Ms Janet
Denham, John
Dewar, Rt Hon Donald
Dismore, Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Donohoe, Brian H
Doran, Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, David
Drown, Ms Julia
Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth
Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Eagle, Ms Maria (L'pool Garston)
Edwards, Huw
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Ms Louise
Ennis, Jeff
Fatchett, Derek
Field, Rt Hon Frank
Fisher, Mark
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Fitzsimons, Ms Lorna
Flint, Ms Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Ms Barbara
Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Foster, Michael John (Worcester)
Galbraith, Sam
Gapes, Mike
George, Andrew (St Ives)
George, Bruce (Walsall S)
Gerrard, Neil
Gibson, Dr Ian
Godman, Dr Norman A
Godsiff, Roger
Goggins, Paul
Golding, Mrs Llin
Gordon, Mrs Eileen
Graham, Thomas
Grant, Bernie
Griffiths, Ms Jane (Reading E)
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Grocott, Bruce
Grogan, John
Gunnell, John
Hain, Peter
Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale)
Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE)
Hanson, David
Heal, Mrs Sylvia
Healey, John
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich)
Hepburn, Stephen
Heppell, John
Hesford, Stephen
Hill, Keith
Hinchliffe, David
Hodge, Ms Margaret
Hoey, Kate
Home Robertson, John
Hood, Jimmy
Hoon, Geoffrey
Hope, Philip
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, George (Knowsley N)
Howells, Dr Kim
Hoyle, Lindsay
Hughes, Ms Beverley
(Stretford & Urmston)
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)
Humble, Mrs Joan
Hurst, Alan
Hutton, John
Iddon, Brian
Illsley, Eric
Ingram, Adam
Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampst'd)
Jackson, Mrs Helen (Hillsborough)
Jamieson, David
Jenkins, Brian (Tamworth)
Johnson, Ms Melanie
(Welwyn Hatfield)
Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside)
Jones, Helen (Warrington N)
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S)
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald
Keeble, Ms Sally
Keen, Alan (Feltham)
Keen, Mrs Ann (Brentford)
Kemp, Fraser
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree)
Khabra, Piara S
Kidney, David
Kilfoyle, Peter
King, Andy (Rugby)
King, Miss Oona (Bethnal Green)
Kingham, Tessa
Kumar, Dr Ashok
Ladyman, Dr Stephen
Lawrence, Ms Jackie
Laxton, Bob
Lepper, David
Leslie, Christopher
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S)
Lewis, Terry (Worsley)
Liddell, Mrs Helen
Linton, Martin
Livingstone, Ken
Lloyd, Tony (Manchester C)
Lock, David
Love, Andy
McAllion, John
McAvoy, Thomas
McCafferty, Ms Chris
McDonagh, Ms Siobhain
Macdonald, Calum
McDonnell, John
McGuire, Mrs Anne
McIsaac, Ms Shona
McKenna, Ms Rosemary
Mackinlay, Andrew
McLeish, Henry
McNulty, Tony
MacShane, Denis
Mactaggart, Fiona
McWalter, Tony
McWilliam, John
Mahon, Mrs Alice
Mallaber, Ms Judy
Marek, Dr John
Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S)
Marsden, Paul (Shrewsbury)
Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Martlew, Eric
Maxton, John
Meacher, Rt Hon Michael
Meale, Alan
Merchant, Piers
Merron, Ms Gillian
Michael, Alun
Milburn, Alan
Miller, Andrew
Mitchell, Austin
Moffatt, Laura
Moonie, Dr Lewis
Moran, Ms Margaret
Morgan, Ms Julie (Cardiff N)
Morgan, Rhodri (Cardiff W)
Morley, Elliot
Mountford, Ms Kali
Mudie, George
Mullin, Chris
Murphy, Dennis (Wansbeck)
Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Norris, Dan
O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
O'Brien, William (Normanton)
Olner, Bill
O'Neill, Martin
Organ, Mrs Diana
Osborne, Mrs Sandra
Palmer, Dr Nick
Pendry, Tom
Perham, Ms Linda
Pickthall, Colin
Pike, Peter L
Plaskitt, James
Pollard, Kerry
Pond, Chris
Pound, Stephen
Powell, Sir Raymond
Prentice, Ms Bridget (Lewisham E)
Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
Quin, Ms Joyce
Quinn, Lawrie
Radice, Giles
Rammell, Bill
Raynsford, Nick
Reed, Andrew (Loughborough)
Reid, Dr John (Hamilton N)
Rogers, Allan
Rooney, Terry
Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
Rowlands, Ted
Roy, Frank
Ruane, Chris
Russell, Ms Christine (Chester)
Salter, Martin
Savidge, Malcolm
Sawford, Phil
Sedgemore, Brian
Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert
Shipley, Ms Debra
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S)
Singh, Marsha
Skinner, Dennis
Smith, Ms Angela (Basildon)
Smith, Miss Geraldine
(Morecambe & Lunesdale)
Smith, Ms Jacqui (Redditch)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Snape, Peter
Soley, Clive
Southworth, Ms Helen
Spellar, John
Squire, Ms Rachel
Starkey, Dr Phyllis
Steinberg, Gerry
Stevenson, George
Stewart, David (Inverness E)
Stewart, Ian (Eccles)
Stinchcombe, Paul
Stoate, Dr Howard
Stott, Roger
Strang, Rt Hon Dr Gavin
Straw, Rt Hon Jack
Stringer, Graham
Stuart, Mrs Gisela (Edgbaston)
Sutcliffe, Gerry
Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann
(Dewsbury)
Taylor, Ms Dari (Stockton S)
Taylor, David (NW Leics)
Taylor, Rt Hon John D (Strangford)
Thomas, Gareth (Clwyd W)
Thomas, Gareth R (Harrow W)
Thompson, William
Tipping, Paddy
Todd, Mark
Touhig, Don
Truswell, Paul
Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Turner, Desmond (Kemptown)
Turner, Dr George (NW Norfolk)
Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Vaz, Keith
Vis, Dr Rudi
Ward, Ms Claire
Wareing, Robert N
Watts, David
White, Brian
Whitehead, Alan
Wicks, Malcolm
Williams, Rt Hon Alan
(Swansea W)
Williams, Dr Alan W
(E Carmarthen)
Williams, Mrs Betty (Conwy)
Wills, Michael
Winnick, David
Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Wood, Mike
Woolas, Phil
Wright, Dr Tony (Cannock)
Wright, Tony (Gt Yarmouth)
Wyatt, Derek

Tellers for the Noes:


Mr. Greg Pope and
Mr. John McFall.

Question accordingly negatived.

4 Jun 1997 : Column 416

4.45 pm

Mr. Salmond: I beg to move amendment No. 71, in page 1, line 6, leave out 'tax-varying powers' and insert 'constitutional status'.


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