Highlands & Islands MSP Emma Roddick has said that the UK Government’s use of a Section 35 order to block the Gender Recognition Reform (Scotland) Bill is an attack on devolution and on democracy itself.
Speaking to Times Radio this morning [Tuesday 17th January], Ms Roddick expressed her anger at the UK Government’s decision to overrule the bill, which she said had been subject to hundreds of hours of debate and scrutiny in the Scottish Parliament before being passed with a two-thirds majority.
“This is an unprecedented and outrageous action from the UK Government.
“When people vote in Scottish Parliament elections, however they choose to vote, they believe they are voting for the people who will make decisions on devolved issues on their behalf.
“We spent hours upon hours debating this bill, which had hundreds of amendments, to ensure that we got it right. Amendments were accepted by the Scottish Government from every party, and MSPs from every party supported the bill in the end.
“The fact that it is perfectly possible for a Tory Government, that Scotland did not vote for, to step in and overrule a two-thirds majority in the Scottish Parliament should really scare and anger people.
“For me, this is a clear demonstration of how weak devolution is, how limited we are, and ultimately how broken this union is.”