Friday, 23 May 2008

David Cameron - Pro England - Pro The Union.

David CameronIn his speech to the Scottish Conservative Party Conference, David Cameron tried to convey his feelings that whilst there is a political imbalance across the United Kingdom which needs desperately to be addressed, the Union should be protected. You may have noticed that the banner at the top of my blog says "pro England" That is still true today as when it was designed for me by Liam Murray a good while ago (Liam also designed Iain Dale's new blog). In my mind being pro England does not necessitate the need to be anti any of the other members of the Union. I have lived and worked in Scotland and have a daughter born there. I served in the RN for 16 years and worked alongside many great friends from all four of the countries that make up our Kingdom. The Union just requires a measure of balance.

David said:

"Let me make it one hundred percent clear: I am passionate about the Union. I don't want to be the Prime Minister of England. I want to be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom - all of it, including Scotland.

"I absolutely believe we are stronger together, and weaker apart, and I will do anything and everything to keep our two countries as one. And that means addressing one-by-one the deeper questions that are fuelling separatism.

"Now, there are some would simply blame constitutional and economic arrangements between England and Scotland. 'Sort out West Lothian, renegotiate Barnett, and everything will be fine' they say. Sorry, I don't think that's an adequate explanation for the separatism we're seeing today.

"The West Lothian question and Barnett Formula have been around and been debated for decades - don't tell me it's only now that they've lit the separatist touchpaper. Of course, that doesn't mean we should ignore them. It's essential that we find answers to any unfairness in the Union - and to questions of accountability, justice and democracy. And unlike Labour - who sweep it under the carpet and hope it goes away - we will take those questions seriously. I am confident it will be possible to develop an arrangement whereby, when the House of Commons considers matters that affect only English constituencies, it is English MPs who have the decisive say.
I've said before that the Conservatives under David Cameron do not provide all the answers to all the problems we have with the Union, but they are willing to admit that they exist. Cameron and his team do want find a solution to the English votes on English matters problem. He also understands the need to address the many inequalities that have arisen since the birth of devolution. One thing is for sure, the next government of the UK will be either a Conservative or Labour (looking less likely by the day) one and I know that Labour have no intention of addressing English concerns. Many complain that Cameron does not promise enough or go far enough when he does talk about the problems with the Union - and to some extent I agree. But I will not throw the baby out with the bath water.

The only realistic way to see a better deal for England is to vote Conservative.

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