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Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland each have devolved administrations, with varying degrees of responsibility. The remaining matters reserved by Westminster are devolved to the Scotland Office, the Wales Office and the Northern Ireland Office, and are scrutinised by the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland Grand Committees.

In England, only Greater London has a devolved administration, with a directly-elected Mayor. The rest of England, however, still accepts direct rule from Westminster, although some areas have Combined Authorities. A policy called 'English Votes for English Laws' [or 'EVEL'] was introduced in 2015, in an attempt to address the devolution inequality that was created in 1998.

These are some key points of EVEL:-
  • The bill is be proposed before the House of Commons and the Speaker would determine whether the bill affects England only, England & Wales or, for finance and tax bills, England, Wales & Northern Ireland.
  • The bill will go through the normal legislative procedure, except that following the report stage, the bill would be passed to a Legislative Grand Committee for scrutinisation.
  • This Legislative Grand Committee would consist of all MPs for the areas that the law would affect. Also, unless I'm mistaken, the Select Committee would also be comprised of MPs only for those areas.
  • Regardless of which home nation the Secretary of State for this matter is from, they would always be involved in the lawmaking process that would only affect one of the three territorial jurisdictions that this bill would involve.
This is an unacceptable way to treat the U.K.'s fourth constituent country. The Speaker should not be given sole responsibility of determining what area the bill affects - that responsibility should, at least, lay with the Member of Parliament bringing the bill to the House.

It also gives the impression that the good people of England - the nation that founded the Westminster system - cannot be trusted to have their own legislature. If we are to be a modern nation, each with their own devolved responsibilities, we need a clearer, uniform system of federalism. Either each nation has devolved legislatures or each nation has direct rule from Westminster; the system we have at present is unfair.

Once this situation has been addressed, the next question should be - what model of government would Greater London have in a new, federal United Kingdom? Many nations such as the United States of America, Australia, India and Brazil have their own Federal Territories where the seat of government sits; London would be our seat of federal government, so would be a Federal Territory to the United Kingdom.

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