Black­ford ejected – SNP fol­low

Mem­bers protest at West­min­ster

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - FRONT PAGE - BY JEN­NIFER McKIERNAN WEST­MIN­STER CORRESPONDENT

SNP lead­ers have sig­nalled that the gloves are off in their bid to win the best deal for Scot­land on the de­vo­lu­tion set­tle­ment.

Dra­matic scenes saw SNP West­min­ster leader Ian Black­ford ex­pelled from the House of Com­mons, fol­lowed by all his MPs, af­ter Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May re­fused to al­ter her EU With­drawal Bill.

Mr Black­ford had used a lit­tle-known par­lia­men­tary pro­ce­dure to call for an im­me­di­ate vote in the mid­dle of PMQs, lead­ing to a stand-up row with the Speaker John Ber­cow.

The P&J can re­veal the brains be­hind the move as Aberdeen North MP and SNP West­min­ster deputy leader Kirsty Black­man, who dug out the pro­ce­dure in the par­lia­men­tary bi­ble Ersk­ine May.

She said her party had played by the rules with­out suc­cess and was now run­ning out of op­tions to be heard.

“We have to do ev­ery­thing we can to stand up for the peo­ple of Scot­land,” she said. “We have tried at every op­por­tu­nity to say ‘we don’t agree with what you’re do­ing’ to the UK Gov­ern­ment. To­day we have taken a dif­fer­ent tac­tic, al­though still within the rules, in or­der to make sure it is clear quite how un­happy we are.”

Ross, Skye and Lochaber MP Mr Black­ford said the “out­ra­geous treat­ment” of Scot­tish MPs be­ing un­able to de­bate the de­vo­lu­tion as­pects of the bill jus­ti­fied his ac­tions yes­ter­day.

“This is a se­ri­ous sit­u­a­tion and a con­sti­tu­tional cri­sis,” he said.

Scot­tish Sec­re­tary David Mun­dell said the walk­out was not jus­ti­fied as the EU With­drawal Bill re­flected the Sewel Con­ven­tion gov­ern­ing the de­vo­lu­tion set­tle­ment.

“My job is not to roll over to Nicola Stur­geon, even if that is Mr Black­ford’s role.”

AL­TO­GETHER NOW: MP Chris Law takes a selfie alongt­side SNP West­min­ster leader Ian Black­ford, cen­tre, sur­rounded by the party’s MPs

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.