An English Parliament

I signed one of 10 Downing Street's e-petitions a few months back calling on the Prime Minister to agree with setting up an English Parliament. The petition has now been responded to by one of Mister Blair's' office boys (apparently the PM never actually sees any of the petitions sent to him - which makes one wonder what the point of the site is)
Here is the response:

Devolution has been designed to meet the varying demands of the people of the UK. The great virtue of the British Constitution is that it has for centuries, been able to accommodate difference and anomaly in order to meet the specific aspirations of the British people.
English constituency MPs currently total over 80% of Members in Parliament and they represent over 80% of the population of the UK. An English Parliament would turn the UK into a federal nation. History shows that where one country in a federation contains more than 30% of the economic wealth or population, the federation is unsustainable. England's dominance within the UK would make a federal UK unsustainable. There would be continued tension between the policies of the English Parliament and Government, and those of the federal Parliament and Government, with the English institutions determining most of the economic and social policies, including public expenditure, but the federal institutions responsible for defence, taxation and macro-economic policy.
The highest priority was given to the creation of a parliament in Scotland, and a national assembly in Wales, since the demand for decentralisation in these countries was long-standing. Indeed, proposals to create similar institutions were enacted in the late 1970's but failed to secure the necessary majorities in referendums. The existing devolution settlement introduced in 1997/98 was designed to meet varying needs, and enabled better local decision making, in response to local issues.

So the answer in short is no England can't have its own parliament because England is a big bully that can't be trusted.


  1. England Bashing Alwyn ap Huw?

  2. Yes Geraint, more English Bashing from the Prime Ministers office.

  3. I think the fundamental point is that England would not necessarily benefit from a Parliament, but the other members of the Union may suffer.

    I know you want an English Parliament to hasten the dissolution of the Union. But have you stopped to think what an independent England would be like for Wales?

  4. I believe in an English parliament because I believe that that is what is right and just for England. The idea that Welsh or Scottish people should object to an English parliament because of some narrow self-interest reeks of a weird sort of reverse imperialism.

    This idea that England is somehow too big for a parliament is absolute nonsense. England doesn’t magically become the largest nation in Britain by gaining its own parliament. It already is the largest nation in Britain; the imbalance has existed for the best part of a millennium and a half.

    If England continues to be treated as a second-class nation, the only nation in the UK seen as unsuited to have its own parliament, then the backlash from the English is going to do much more harm to relations between England & Wales and especially England & Scotland than creating an English parliament will do.

  5. I'm a fan of NM but Good reply AapH.

    There are no territorial arguments between the three countries and there's too much in common to entail stupid little arguments or any great difference in taxation or social policy etc.

    However, England are a nation (one of Europe's first nationstates) and nobody beleives in Britian any more. There is a strong civic, progressive and intergrationist argument to define a political English nationality and an English parliament would be an integral part of that.

    The Union itsn't there to serve the electorial needs of the Labour party.

  6. I think that England was actually the first modern nation state. And yet New Labour won't let it be a nation. These are funny times, aren't they?

  7. Thought England had a parliament =its called Westminster isnt it ?

  8. valleys man, Westminster is not the English parliament it is the British parliament.

    That is why Founation hospitals and student tuition fees were imposed on England against the wishes of the majority of MPs who represented an English constituency.