Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Reshuffle gives new legs to English Parliament campaign

Tony Blair's decision to make John Reid Home Secretary and promote Douglas Alexander to Transport Secretary has given further impetus to the debate about England's democratic deficit, as witness this letter by former Home Secretary Lord Baker in today's Telegraph.

Of the two, I am less concerned by Dr Reid's appointment. Although Scotland has a separate legal system it is not strictly the case that the Home Office is an "English-only" department, especially now that most of its work consists of dealing with homeland security issues.

Slightly more troubling is the appointment of yet another Scot as Transport Secretary, given that transport is not only an entirely devolved matter but that, under the Barnett Formula, the Scottish transport budget is way in excess of that of England's in terms of spending-per-head.

More reaction at the CEP newsblog.

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