A cross-party party group of MPs has today urged him not to press ahead with controversial legislation but instead have a “period of reflection”.
The publication of the draft Wales Bill last year ignited fierce controversy, with First Minister Carwyn Jones warning it could create an “English veto” and Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood describing it as an “insult”.
“Over the course of the inquiry, the committee has heard evidence that raises doubts about the draft Bill’s ability to provide the lasting settlement it seeks to create... Therefore, a period of reflection is necessary to reach a settlement that is long lasting.”He may not be a fan of devolution but he does seem to realise that this Bill is a Dog's Dinner.
We recommend that Whitehall be given a second attempt to come up with a list of the powers to be reserved.”The MPs want a procedure put in place for getting ministerial consent – with the consent given by default if no decision has been made within 60 days.
“We now ask the Secretary of State to pause, so that he can reflect on the recommendations we have made. These will require him to look again at the necessity tests, the list of reservations, the matter of ministerial consent and also to continue to review the issue of a separate or distinct Welsh jurisdiction.
“There is a growing body of Welsh law that differs from that which applies in England, but the implications of this requires careful scrutiny.”
“This highly critical report reinforces what we have already heard from lawyers, academics and constitutional experts. The draft Wales Bill is not fit for purpose and Stephen Crabb has mismanaged this process from start to finish.Plaid Cymru MP Liz Saville Roberts, a member of the committee, said:
“It’s clear that his failure to stand up to Whitehall departments has led to a Bill that is badly drafted, overly complex and completely unworkable. He now needs to go away and come back with a Bill that can command the confidence of the Welsh people.
“As we have already said, Labour MPs will not support this Bill unless it is radically amended.”
“It is crucial that the Secretary of State recognises the mounting evidence from legal experts, academia as well as politicians from all parties, including his own, that the draft Wales Bill is not fit for purpose.”
Will a Pause work or is the Bill so flawed that even with major surgery with Amendments it cannot be good for Welsh democratic government?
Why can't we see a model based on the original settlement for Scotland at the very least.
Why is Wales the only Nation in the UK that has to get "consent" for some of its legislation?
Even England with "English Votes for English Laws " (EVEL) now in some sectors more powers of its own than Wales.
Can anyone Imagine the Tories having a majority of seats in England , but are not the government in the UL as a whole having to get "Consent" for voted deemed to come under EVEL jurisdiction?
But the answer is in our hands . We must throw out the Unionist Parties in Wales and this should be by those who may be opposed to Independence but want much more powers than what we have now.
But I do not believe we should support any Bill from Westminster simply because it purports to be a "Devolution" Bill.
Rather than a Pause we need to scrap this Bill and start again with something other than the Devo Dipyn bach or puts it in reverse.