MPs block bid to ban Scots MPs if Scotland votes 'yes'


Scottish constituencies should be prevented from taking part in the 2015 general election if Scotland votes "yes" for independence in the forthcoming referendum, a Conservative has argued.

John Stevenson said it would be unfair to the rest of the UK if Scottish MPs are elected to Westminster in the interim period between the referendum outcome and independence being realised in "2016".

The pro-union MP explained he was in an "unusual position of proposing a bill which I do not want to see take effect" but told MPs it was a "matter of principle".

He said on 25 March 2014: "At the moment the consensus seems to be that Scotland would return MPs to Westminster in the 2015 election until whatever time the country becomes independent. But this is wholly unacceptable.

"Why should the peoples of Northern Ireland, Wales and England have laws passed upon them in this House by MPs who will for all intents and purpose be about to part of a foreign country with divergent interests and priorities."

But Labour MP Thomas Docherty, who represents Dunfermline and West Fife, contended that the MP's proposal would have serious constitutional implications.

He questioned whether, in the 10 months between the referendum outcome and the election, Scottish people would still be expected to pay taxes to the UK Government, and if the latter would continue to make spending decisions on behalf of Scottish people.

He also wanted to know who would represent the "430,000" residents of Scotland who are born elsewhere in UK.

The House divided on the MP's bill, defeating it by 16 to 226, a majority of 210.

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