SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford claimed the British Government has been helping fuel support for the independence campaign with its conduct through the coronavirus pandemic. Mr Blackford suggested the proposed UK Internal Market Bill Boris Johnson devised would limit Scotland’s trade and cut the nation off from the bigger EU market. But the Prime Minister was quick to point out the bill would grant more powers to Edinburgh than the Scottish Government would have under the European Union.
Mr Johnson said: “I really hesitate to accuse the Right Honourable Gentleman of failing to listen to my last answer but it is very clear that the UK Internal Market Bill is massively devolutionary.
“The 70 powers passed from Brussels down to Scotland…it’s purpose is very sensible, which is to protect jobs throughout the entire UK.
“On a political level, it seems bizarre to me that the Scottish Nationalist Party actually want to reverse that process, hand those powers back to unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats in Brussels.
“Is that really the policy? I don’t think it’s sensible.”
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Once the UK has left the single market and the customs union in December, the country will no longer be bound to EU regulations and Westminster is set to repatriate powers on several areas.
The devolved nations are also expected to regain full control of key sectors which however could create some internal divergence within the UK.
Mr Blackford suggested the Government is now “panicking” at the prospect of further division with Scotland fuelling support for independence.
The SNP Westminster leader said: “The Tory Party held a political Cabinet with the Prime Minister in a panic about the majority and increasing support of Scottish independence.
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