U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron vowed to give English lawmakers more say on laws that only affect England after Scots rejected independence. Scotland’s first minister, Alex Salmond, announced his resignation.
Speaking after Scots voted yesterday against breaking away from the U.K. by 55.3 percent to 44.7 percent, Cameron said enhanced powers for the Scottish Parliament, promised in the closing days of the referendum campaign, will be matched by steps to cut the influence of Scottish lawmakers in the House of Commons in London. That plan that may hit the opposition Labour Party’s chances of forming a functioning U.K. government in future.
“It’s time for our United Kingdom to come together and move forward,” Cameron said in a televised statement outside his London office this morning. “A vital part of that will be a balanced settlement, fair to people in Scotland and importantly to everyone in England, Wales and Northern Ireland as well.”
Salmond, the leader of the Scottish National Party who initiated the push for independence, told a news conference in Edinburgh this afternoon that the referendum defeat made a decision necessary on who should lead further efforts to gain more power for Scotland.
“I believe that in this new exciting situation, redolent with possibility, party, Parliament and country would benefit from new leadership,” Salmond said. “Therefore I have told the national secretary of the SNP that I will not accept nomination to be a candidate for leader at the annual conference in Perth on Nov. 13-15.”