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BREAKING UP BRITAIN REFERENDUM

 The Attempt to Overthrow

Parliamentary Democracy 2014

The Breaking Up Britain Referendum

In 2014 an attempt was made to overthrow Parliamentary Democracy by th use of the referendum device.

This page records the exchanges between commonrepresentation.org.uk and the Conservative and Liberal government. 

 

On The Record

 The referendum was a survey:

Advocate General of Scotland 28 May 2013

"It (referendum) does not make provision for Scottish  (or any other) constituencies in Parliament and consequently can have no effect on the authority by which MP's represent those constituencies in Parliament."

 

 

  The Right Hon Clement Attlee MP

 British Primeminister 1945-1951 (Labour)

  “I could not consent to the introduction into our national life of a device so alien to all our traditions as the referendum,”

 

 

Parliamentary Democracy

Statement

on proposed amendment to Schedule 5 (Reserved Matters) 1998 Scotland Act

 January 2012

 ELECTION DECIDES UNION NOT REFERENDUM

The unity or separation of the United Kingdom was decided legally and peacefully at the 2010 General Election by electors exercising their authority. In Scotland 59/59 constituencies authorised their MP to sit in the Union Parliament.

 At all general elections, electors in every constituency decide first and foremost if they wish to be represented (be part of the whole) in the Union Parliament.  

This is done by electing candidates (MP’s) who will or will not (abstentionist) take their seats in the House of Commons. 

If electors do not wish to be part of the United Kingdom then they must give their vote to an abstentionist candidate and if that candidate wins then the new MP can refuse to sit in the Union Parliament in the knowledge that he represents the expressed electoral authority and political will of his constituents. Abstention is the price that a separatist must pay (willing pay) in order not to be part of the whole.

MP’s who have been elected to represent the constituency in the Union Parliament do not have the authority to provide for the removal the constituency from the Union Parliament without submitting themselves as abstentionist candidates to the electorate to decide the matter at a by-election or general election. 

It is called Parliamentary democracy.

 

 

 

RECORD

14th January 2013

Scottish Referendum - It's plastic democracy: cheap and easy to mould.
 

10th January 2013

Scottish Referendum-

No White Paper. No Bill. No Act. 

No Parliamentary Democracy 

(Scottish Referendum Order in Council due in House of Commons Tue 15th and House of Lords Wed 16th of January 2013)

 In 2010 59/59 constituencies in Scotland voted to be represented in the Union Parliament.

In January 2013 the government will legislate to hold a referendum that will prevent four million electors in Scotland deciding the matter again as they did in 2010 – through constituency election.

 This legislation is known as an Order in Council (OiC) it is being used in order to avoid full parliamentary debate.

 On a matter of the highest constitutional importance:

no Green Paper, no White Paper, no Bill, and no Act of Parliament will exist

but still it will become law unless it is stopped.

 

Quote

Erskine May

“It is common practice for government bills of ‘first-class’ constitutional importance to be committed to a Committee of the whole House”

 

 

27 Nov 2012

‘First Class Constitutional Importance"

Erskine May

“It is common practice for government bills of ‘first-class’ constitutional importance to be committed to a Committee of the whole House”

The amendment to the Scotland Act 1998 to give legal power to the Scottish Parliament on the matter of the Union of the Kingdoms of Scotland andEnglandand the Parliament of theUnited Kingdomis to take place not through a Constitutional Bill but through an Order in Council.

 

15 Nov 2012 

 Lawless Part 2

The Order In Council proposed to amend Schedule 5 and permit the Scottish Parliament to legislate on the matter has not yet been passed.

 The matter of the the Union remains legally an exclusive matter for the British Parliament

However 

The Scottish Parliament’s recently set up Referendum (Scotland) Bill Committee has now voted to support the Edinburgh Agreement proposals to give the Scottish Parliament the power to hold a referendum on the Union.  This is now subject to a vote by the Scottish Parliament.

13 Nov 2012

Lawless Part 1 

The House of Commons is to have no full (updated 18Nov 2012) debate on whether the Scottish Parliament should be made competent on the matter of a referendum in Scotland replacing parliamentary election as the method of determining the representation or non representation of the 59 constituencies in Scotland in the Union Parliament.

 An Order in Council (OIC) is being used to avoid constitutional debate.

 No Order in Council  (OIC) to permit an amendment to the Schedule 5 of the 1998 Scotland Act (which reserves the matter of the Union to the Union Parliament) has yet been approved by Her Majesty.

Without the OIC the Scottish Parliament is not competent on the matter of the Union – it remains tied to the provisions of the Scotland Act 1998.

The Scottish Parliament has now set up a committee: Referendum (Scotland) Bill Committee.

 

 

15 November 2012

 Police Commissoner" Elections Abstain 

Your electoral authority is a precious matter use it sparingly and wisely,

 if you do not believe in it do not vote for it.

 

 Common Representation Campaigning Update

3rd November 2012

Common Representation Goes to Parliament 

A paper advocating the repeal of legislative devolution and the introduction of a common representation act has been submitted to Parliament's McKay Commission on devolution (Submission 60).

 

16th October 2012 

 Edinburgh Agreement

Comment

It's purpose is to remove the elctor's power ( the referendum prevents election) to choose their MP (and preferred manifesto) and further dis -integrate the United Kingdom.

 

3 NOTES FOR DEBATE 

The electors authority, exercised and transmitted in the General Election on the 6th of May 2010 remains contained in the 59 MP's who represent those constituencies.

 

1

 Territorial Authority

 Electors in a constituency parliamentary election (not the sitting MP or a collection of MP’s) decide if the constituency is to be represented or not represented in the Union Parliament.

 2

Method of Authority

 If as Mr Cameron asserts representation of a constituency or group of constituencies in the Union Parliament is now decided by the referendum mechanism then by what authority do MP’s (elected in 2010) currently sit in the House of Commons?

 (The method of authority (election or referendum) must be uniform)

  3 

Equity of Authority

If as Mr Cameron asserts representation in the Union Parliament is now decided by the referendum mechanism then when will a referendum be held in Witney and other constituencies.

 (The method of authority must be equitable across all the common parliament constituencies)

 

TANKERNESS RUNS AGROUND

Lord Tankerness is legally wrong when on BBC Newsnight 21st Aug 2012 he asserted that the “Scottish Government” had a mandate to hold a referendum on theUnion as a consequence of the Scottish Parliament election held on Thu 5th May 2011.

 On Thu 5th May 2011 the Scotland Act 1998 was in force and that legislation explicitly prevents the Scottish Parliament from being competent on the matter of theUnion.

Note:

Lord Tankerness is Her Majesty's Advocate General forScotland whose duty it is to advise the Crown and United Kingdom Government on Scots law.

 

REFERENDUM CHALLENGE

An Extract of the Exchange of Constitutional Opinion.

Note:

“AGD” refers to the reply received from the Advocate General for Scotland’s department -  the department responsible for providing the British government with constitutional and legal opinion in regard to Scotland.

 

 The exhange recorded here is a small attempt to explore the serious constitutional matters that the Conservative and Labour parties did not want explored.

 

***

Exclusive Extract

From Email Exchange with AGD:

 

Referring to the Scottish Referendum Order 2013

the AG replies 28May 13:

 

 “…it does not make provision for Scottish (or any other) constituencies in Parliament and consequently can have no effect on the authority by which MP’s represent those Constituencies in Parliament."

 

BY-ELECTION CHALLENGE NEWS

 Michael Moore has been challenged to resign and call a by-election on the Union instead of a referendum

he has also benn challenged to explain or withdraw part of his Scottish Referendum Order Speech 2013

The exchange of email follows

 

Prior to that recorded exchange is a more recent exchange: 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

GORDON BANKS MP

BY-ELECTION CHALLENGE

(Not another By-Election Challenge!)

 

Gordon Banks MP was challenged on BBC Newsnight Scotland Debate 13/05/13 to resign his seat and create a by-election. He claimed had resigned. What follows is the exchange of emails on the matter.

 

30 May 2013

From Mr Banks MP

”My position and the position established by the holding of a referendum next year is clear.
Any election outwith the referendum has no legal standing in respect of the question of Scottish independence.
I was re-elected in 2010 to serve to the end of the relevant parliament, the introduction of a referendum did not have a mandatory condition of by elections in every constituency in Scotland prior to the referendum itself and as such I will serve this period in the parliament to which I am elected. Thereafter I will reapply for my job as elected politicians have to do if they seek re-election
As I have already made it very clear to you what my position is, I consider this matter is now closed

G Banks MP
Ochil and South Perthshire”

 

 

 

30 May 2013

"I could not consent to the introduction into our national life of a device so alien to all our traditions as the referendum,”

  The Right Hon Clement Attlee MP

 British Primeminister 1945-1951

“Mr Banks,

Thank you for your reply. I note you did not repeat your claim that you made in the Newsnight debate that you had "resigned" your seat.

In your reply you claim that there is "...currently no other constitutional way for this issue to be resolved." except by referendum.

This is plainly not true.

Constituency election is the historical, constitutional and parliamentary method that has been accepted as valid and binding for centuries in order to determine

representation (or non-representation - abstention) in the Union Parliament.

This is proven by yourself being elected in the 2010 general election as the Member of Parliament for Ochil and South Perthshire and representing the constituency

electorate in the Union Parliament.

After only three years since you were elected in 2010 you now want the electorate to reconsider their representation in the Union Parliament but you intend

to deny them the opportunity to do so in a constituency election before the referendum.

Please identify the mandate (if any) that authorises you on this course of action.”

 

28 May 2013

“I understand you have been pursuing me in respect of a Newsnight Scotland Independence Referendum debate.

Let me clarify my position for you.

The electorate in Scotland including my constituency will decide on the question of the Union in the referendum next year. There is currently no other constitutional way for this issue to  be resolved.

I was elected in 2010 to serve in the Westminster parliament  to the end of this parliament, which is expected to be 2015,  and this I will do.

Like all other elected representatives who wish to continue representing their constituency I will then re-apply for my job.

G Banks MP”

 

 

May 17 2013

“Mr Banks MP,

You were asked on the above programme if you would resign your seat and allow the electorate to decide the matter of the Union.

You replied you have to resign your seat every five years. This is not true.

Parliament is dissolved on the calling of a general election.

Please clarify.”

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

 

REFERENDUM ORDER SPEECH CHALLENGE

5th April 2013

A Reply from Michael Moore

Thank you for your email of 19th March to the Secretary of State for Scotland. We have received and noted your correspondence but we have nothing further to add to our earlier correspondence.

 

FOR THE PUBLIC RECORD

Letter 19 March 2013

To Mr Moore MP

Several requests have now been made by telephone and email through: your Parliamentary Office, the Scotland Office and your constituency office for you to identify the mandate for a Scottish referendum on the Union.

 In the Scottish Referendum Order debate in the HOC on the15th January 2013 you stated to the House: 

 “…we recognised the political mandate that the SNP had secured for a referendum.” 

 Hansard source (Citation: HC Deb,15 January 2013, c742) 

No mandate (legal or political) on the Union was excercised or existed in the Scottish Parliament election in May 2011.

This was due to Schedule 5 of the Scotland Act 1998 explicitly reserving the matter of the Union as a matter of mandate for the electorate of the Union Parliament.

Please identify the political mandate you refer to and list any other matters that are covered by it - if not please withdraw this part of your Scottish Referendum Order speech.

 

 

 

 

 

 

29th January 2013

Letter to Mr Moore 

FOR THE PUBLIC RECORD

Thank you for your reply.

Mr Moore

You state that "...the SNP secured a political mandate to hold a referendum..."

No mandate (legal or political) on the Union was excercised or existed in the Scottish Parliament election in May 2011.

This was due to Schedule 5 of the Scotland Act 1998 explicitly reserving the matter of the Union as a matter of mandate for the electorate of the Union Parliament.

Please identify the political mandate you refer to and list any other matters that are covered by it - if not please withdraw this part of your Scottish Referendum Order speech.

 

 The Following email was recieved on 29th January 2013

"The Secretary of State has been clear that the result of the Scottish Parliament elections in May 2011 meant that the SNP secured a political mandate to hold a referendum on independence for Scotland. The UK Government has also been clear that the Scottish Government did not have the legal mandate to hold such a referendum. This is why the UK Government has worked constructively with Scottish Government to reach an agreement which will allow a referendum to take place. Both Houses in the UK Parliament and the Scottish Parliament have approved a section 30 Order which devolves to the Scottish Parliament the power to legislate for a single question referendum on independence, to be held at any time before the end of 2014. An Order made under section 30(2) of the Scotland Act 1998, allows for modifications to be made to Schedule 5 of the Scotland Act.

This agreement will facilitate a legal, fair and decisive referendum which will enable people in Scotland to have their say and which will resolve the independence issue decisively"

A further email has been sent to Michael Moore.

  

22nd January 2013

Letter to Mr Moore

 For the Public Record

 Mr Moore

 In the Scottish Referendum Order debate in the HOC on the15th January 2013 you stated to the House: 

 “…we recognised the political mandate that the SNP had secured for a referendum.” 

 Hansard source (Citation: HC Deb,15 January 2013, c742) 

 No "mandate" could have been exercised on the 5th of May 2011 in the Scottish Parliament election as the Scotland Act 1998 explicitly

excluded the Union (Schedule 5) from being a matter of "mandate" in the election.

  Will you please withdraw this part of your statement?

 _______________________________________________________________________________________________________

 MICHAEL MOORE

BY ELECTION CHALLENGE

 

29th January 2013

Scotland Office Reply

As an official at the Scotland Office, I was asked to respond to your email on behalf of the Secretary of State for Scotland. The Secretary of State has made his position clear and has nothing further to add to this chain of correspondence.

 

 

10th January 2013

Letter to Mr Moore

Thank you for your reply but I did direct the question to Mr Moore, please forward this email to his office for his reply

 Ref your reply - the provisions of "SNP Manifesto" on the day of the Scottish Parliament election in 2011 only apply to devolved matters it cannot  by law (Scotland Act 1998) apply to Reserved matters ie the Union.

 

 

For The Public Record

 Mr Moore

Further to our exchange of emails during this year, you have not yet explained your opinion and opposition to constituency electors determining their own representation (or non representation) in the Union Parliament.

 Please identify the other means, method or source of authority (statute or convention) that informs your opinion and opposition and permits a constituency or group of constituencies to be represented (or not represented) in the Union Parliament other than by constituency election.

 Also you have made no attempt to answer my supplementary question 2 submitted on 16 July 2012:

“If as you assert above, a referendum now (not an election) determines a constituency (or group of constituencies) being part (or not being a part) of the Union then when will a referendum take place in Witney?” This is a serious question as it relates to the equity of constituency representation in the House of Commons.

 

04/01/13

 Scotland Office Reply

Thank you for your email of 11th December to the Secretary of State for Scotland. Your email has been passed to the Scotland Office, as this office has responsibility for issues relating to Scotland’s constitutional future. I have been asked to officially respond on behalf of the Minister.

 The UK Government passionately believes in the United Kingdom and wants to keep that United Kingdom together. However, in May 2011, the Scottish National Party won a majority in the Scottish Parliament with a manifesto pledge for a referendum on independence. While the UK Government does not believe that independence is in the best interests of Scotland, or the rest of the United Kingdom, we have acknowledged the Scottish National Party’s electoral victory and worked constructively with the Scottish Government to reach an agreement which will allow a referendum to take place.

 Voters in Scotland will be able to decide whether to remain in the Union when they vote in the referendum on independence for Scotland in 2014. The UK Government firmly believes that Scotland is  - and will remain - better off within the United Kingdom. We are pleased that we have been able to work with the Scottish Government to agree the framework to enable a legal, fair and decisive referendum to take place and now look forward to moving on to the substantive debate. 

 

11/12/2012

For The Public Record

 Mr Moore

 Further to our exchange of emails during this year, you have not yet explained your opinion and opposition to constituency electors determining their own representation (or non representation) in the Union Parliament.

 Please identify the other means, method or source of authority (statute or convention) that informs your opinion and opposition and permits a constituency or group of constituencies to be represented (or not represented) in the Union Parliament other than by constituency election.

 Also you have made no attempt to answer my supplementary question 2 submitted on 16 July 2012:

“If as you assert above, a referendum now (not an election) determines a constituency (or group of constituencies) being part (or not being a part) of the Union then when will a referendum take place in Witney?” This is a serious question as it relates to the equity of constituency representation in the House of Commons.

 

Scottish Secretary On The Run:

Michael Moore has "...nothing further to add..."

 

30th July 2012 Text of Reply:

Thank you for your email of 16 July to the Secretary of State for Scotland. I have been asked to

officially respond on the Minister's behalf.

It is the Scottish Government who have committed to hold a referendum on Scottish independence.

The UK Government wants to ensure that any referendum is legal, fair and decisive and therefore

Scotland"s two governments are working together to agree the process for holding a legal

referendum. In their consultation document,

Your Scotland, Your Referendum,

the Scottish

Government set out a timetable for the referendum to be held in Autumn 2014.

 The Secretary of State has answered your questions regarding his position as MP for Berwickshire,

Roxburgh and Selkirk and has nothing further to add. The UK Government firmly believes that

Scotland is, and will always remain, better off within the United Kingdom. The Secretary of State

for Scotland will be campaigning to keep Scotland within the United Kingdom in a referendum

 campaign.

 Yours sincerely,

 

 

19 July 2012

Scot Sec challenged by commonrepresentation.org.uk to provide explanation for anti - election views.

Text of email to Mr Moore on 16 July 2012 :

FOR THE PUBLIC RECORD

Mr Moore

Thank you for your reply of 31st May 2012

You state in you letter

"I do not agree with your suggestion that I should now resign my seat and allow a by-election to be held in order for my constituents to be able to decide whether to remain in the UK.”

 Supplementary question 1

Why are you opposed to using the same means (parliamentary democratic election) that authorised you to go and represent Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency in the Union Parliament in 2010?

 

Further:

"They will be able to decide this when they cast their ballot in the Scottish Government's independence referendum.”

 Supplementary question 2

If as you assert above, a referendum now (not an election) determines a constituency (or group of constituencies) being part (or not being a part) of the Union then when will a referendum take place in Witney?

 

14 June 2012

After further contact with Michael Moore's Parliamentary Office a personal reply has been received.

 

MICHAEL MOORE LETTER  

The letter is followed by commonrepresentation.org.uk analysis:

 

"With regard to your recent telephone calls to my office in which you request a

further response to your email of 31 January, my position is that I of course fully

recognise that in 2010 my constituents elected me to represent them in the

UK Parliament. However, I do not agree with your suggestion that I should now

resign my seat and allow a by-election to be held in order for my constituents to be

able to decide whether to remain in the UK. They will be able to decide this when

they cast their ballot in the Scottish Government's independence referendum.

I understand that you may believe that a referendum on Scottish independence

should not be held because constitutional issues are reserved to the UK Parliament.

However, following the result of the Scottish Parliamentary elections last year, the

UK Government have accepted the Scottish Government's wish to hold a

referendum. While I would not have chosen to hold such a referendum I accept that

this is the desire of the Scottish Government and as Secretary of State I will work

with them to ensure it is fair, legal and decisive. The UK Government also want the

referendum to be held sooner rather than later, so the people of Scotland can decide

their future as soon as possible and end this uncertainty which is damaging to

businesses and the economy.

I personally will be campaigning against separation from the UK family as I believe

that this would be extremely damaging for Scotland."

 

 

commonrepresentation.org.uk analysis:

 

 

Mr Moore states in his letter of 31st May 2012 that 

 “…in 2010 my constituents elected me to represent them in the UK Parliament.”  

 

Mr Moore concedes the principal of election (of himself and others) and the  

representation of the consitituency (by the election of him and others)  in theUnion  

Parliament.

 

This is followed by:

 “However, I do not agree with your suggestion that I should now resign my seat and

allow a by-election to be held in order for my constituents to be able to decide whether to

 remain in theUK."

 

Mr Moore having in the previous sentence conceded the parliamentary election principle

 now rejects it and attempts to cover his rejection by declaring:

 “They will be able to decide this when they cast their ballot in the Scottish Government's

 independence referendum.”

 

Mr Moore now asserts that the referendum mechanism is now the definitive source of

 authority on the matter of theUnion, this claim raises three constitutional matters 1. By

 what authority does Mr Moore currently sit and make law in the Union Parliament 2.

 When will other referendums take place across theUnited Kingdom to determine wether

 other constituencies should be part of theUnion and 3. Who (an individual) can be

 authorised by the referendum to represent either outcome ? (no individual is named in

 a referendum - otherwise it becomes an election).

 

Mr Moore further comments

 “I understand that you may believe that a referendum on Scottish independence should

 not be held because constitutional issues are reserved to the UK Parliament.”

 

 The case for parliamentary democracy and against the referendum mechanism stands on

 it’s own regardless of the matter being handled ie AV/European Union/English Regional

 Assemblies/Legislative Devolution.  

 

“However, following the result of the Scottish Parliamentary elections last year, theUK

 Government have accepted the Scottish Government's wish to hold a referendum.

 The “Scottish Government’s wish to hold a referendum” has no legal basis and by law

 was not a matter for debate or decision at the 2011 Scottish Parliamentary election. (Mr

 Mooremust know that theUnionwas a Reserved matter through Schedule 5 of the

 Scotland Act 1998 on the day of the Scottish Parliamentary election.)

 

 “While I would not have chosen to hold such a referendum I accept that this is the desire

 of the Scottish Government and as Secretary of State I will work with them to ensure it is

 fair, legal and decisive.

 

The “…the desire of the Scottish Government…” – please see previous.

 

END

 

 

CHALLENGE BACKGROUND

 

Scottish Secretary By Election Challenge

On the 31st January 2012 Scottish Secretary Michael Moore MP was challenged to resign his seat and create a by-election. This action would allow the electors in his constituency to exercise their electoral authority and decide their parliamentary representation (or abstention) in the Union Parliament.

 

The By-Election Challenge is published below:

“In 2010 the electors of Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency placed their electoral authority in you on the plain commitment you made that you would go and represent the constituency in the Union Parliament.”   

“You now want electors in Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency to reconsider their decision.”  

“In order to permit the electors in Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency to exercise their electoral authority and parliamentary representation which is denied to them by the referendum mechanism will you now resign your seat and allow a by-election to take place, in which the electors in Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency can decide if they wish to remain part of the Union?”

 

 

Michael Moore MP Reply.

Despite an assurance from his Parliamentary Office that it (not the Scottish Office) would provide a reply that would address the matter of parliamentary authority and representation of the electorate no such reply has been received by 14 April 2012.

 

On 13th March 2012 the following reply was received from the Scottish Office:

 

Thank you for your email of 31 January regarding a referendum on independence forScotland.

The UK Government strongly believes in theUnited Kingdomand recognises the benefits it

brings to all of its citizens. The Prime Minister has said that he 'will campaign to keep our

United Kingdom together with every single fibre' that he has. The Government will be making

the optimistic case for maintaining theUnited Kingdom. We firmly believe thatScotlandis and

always will remain better off within theUnited Kingdom. The Government's first priority is to

ensure that a referendum on independence is legal, fair and decisive.

On 10 January, the Government published a consultation paper Scotland's constitutional

future: A consultation on facilitating a legal, fair and decisive referendum. The consultation set

out the Government's clear view that it is not within the powers of the Scottish Parliament to

legislate for a referendum on independence. It is our view that any referendum on

independence brought forward by the Scottish Government would be likely to be challenged in

court and that the Scottish Government would lose.

The consultation document made clear our view on the legal position. However, we are

equally clear that we will honour our commitment not to stand in the way of a referendum. The

document set out the options for legislating on a referendum. We made clear that we are

prepared to provide the Scottish Parliament with the powers to hold a referendum that is

capable of inspiring the trust and confidence of people on either side of the independence

debate.

Since the publication of the UK Government consultation paper, the Scottish Government have

also published a consultation. We are pleased to find there are substantial areas of agreement.

The UK Government will continue to work and consult to ensure that solutions are found to all

the questions of process that are raised, so that the people ofScotlandget a legal, fair and

decisive referendum.

The consultation closed on Friday 9 March and the Government will announce how it intends

to respond shortly.

I hope you find this letter useful.”

 

On the 14th of March Mr Moore's Parliamenatry Office was contacted again to clarify the matter.

To date (14th of April) Mr Moore's Parliametary Office has provided no further information.