Strathclyde academics back Scottish government over competence of Continuity Bill

Strathclyde University academics Professor Aileen McHarg and Dr Christopher McCorkindale have backed the Scottish government over the competence of the EU Continuity Bill after submitting evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Constitution Committee which said they “consider that the Continuity Bills are within devolved competence”.

The support follows similar backing last week from Glasgow University law professor Tom Mullen – a legal expert with a specific research interest in constitutional law – who said the bill was “entirely compatible with European Law”.

Ash Denham, who sits on Holyrood’s Constitution Committee, said: “This bill is vital in protecting the Scottish Parliament’s powers – and it is only going forward because the Tories are attempting to take powers away from the Scottish Parliament after Brexit. If they stop the power grab the bill can be withdrawn.

“However, this backing from Professor McHarg and Dr McCorkindale adds more weight to the Scottish government’s position that the Continuity Bill, along with the Welsh government’s Continuity Bill, is legitimate and within devolved competence.

“As Professor Mullen said last week, this bill is entirely compatible with European law and the restrictions in the Scotland Act – and it is shameful that Ruth Davidson’s Tories oppose protecting Scottish devolution on the order of their Westminster bosses.

“We must ensure the devolution settlement the people in Scotland voted for is protected and that is what the Continuity Bill does.”