What could an alternative constitutional settlement could look like?

10 October 2012

On Thursday 11 October, peers including a former Scotland Secretary and the former Chair of the Commons Scottish Affairs Select Committee will debate what alternative constitutional settlement could be proposed instead of devolution and the break-up of the UK.

Lord Maclennan of Rogart (Liberal Democrat), who tabled the debate and will therefore speak first, said:

“As Henry Ford once said: “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” And I believe wholeheartedly that he had it right. Decisions taken in the United Kingdom can affect people around the world. Global decisions also affect British citizens. We will not be able to maintain any influence if the break-up of the UK goes ahead.

“It is also a very good time to be debating this issue. Although discussions have happened around parts of the constitution, it has not been examined in its entirety for some time. We need to engage our citizens in informed discussions. We must not rush towards any decisions but ensure that full and learned debate takes place.”

Other Members scheduled to speak include:

  • Lord Browne of Ladyton (Labour), former Scotland Secretary;
  • Lord Cormack (Conservative), former Opposition Spokesperson for constitutional affairs; and
  • Lord Hughes of Woodside (Labour), former Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Scottish Office and Chair of the Commons Scottish Affairs Select Committee.

Lord Steel of Aikwood (Liberal Democrat), Lord Foulkes of Cumnock (Labour/Co-operative), Lord Judd (Labour), Lord Kerr of Kinlochard (Crossbench), Lord McConnell of Glenscorrodale (Labour) and Lord Soley (Labour) are also expected to take part in the debate.

Lord Wallace of Tankerness (Liberal Democrat) will respond on behalf of the Government.

The debate is open to media and the public. Please allow time for security screening.

The debate will also be broadcast live on Parliament TV.

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