Westminster diary w/b 4th December


An early start and at the airport for the 7:20. It’s a long day in the chamber debating the European Union (withdrawal) bill. Today the focus is on devolved powers which can only mean clause 11. I am fortunate that my select committee covers the constitution so I have been in the privileged position of talking to experts on this subject for some time. Scotland could benefit from 111 powers being repatriated upon Brexit but clause 11 removes that certainty and instead we need to go cap in hand to Westminster. I mean, who is best to make decisions for Scottish fishermen? The Scottish Government, apparently its Whitehall. I write my speech in the morning and bob dutifully until about ten pm (I think. It was a long day). The debate runs until after midnight, there are three votes (each take about 15 minutes). I stumble into my bed at 2am.


My alarm goes off at 5:15 and I catch the 7:30 to Glasgow. I have private engagement back home.


Duty calls and it’s another 5:15 start. I catch the 7:20 and I am at my desk in Westminster for 9:30. 

I am bobbing for questions during questions to the Secretary of State for Scotland. I don’t get taken. Given the fiasco of the previous few days regarding Brexit, the Irish border and the DUP I am expecting the prime minister to get a rough ride from the leader of the opposition at Prime Ministers Questions. I am wrong. The PM was strong and well in command of her brief. Jeremy Corbyn was all over the place. The PM got a very easy ride until Alan Brown MP pointed out since her 12 New Tories that represents Scottish seats had been elected Scotland had lost out on the equivalent of 256 million pounds for each one. She didn’t know where to go with that. I attend a meeting of the cross party group on drugs, alcohol and justice. It’s good to meet up with the folk from VolteFace and Addaction again. They always bring such clarity to proceedings. There are votes at night and the last one is at 20:30.  


I am speaking in the Fisheries debate at 15:00 so the morning is spent going over my speech and matching it up with the briefing papers that industry experts have sent me. I get a leisurely five minutes to speak and business finishes at 17:00. I get the 19:30 flight home.


I meet up with representatives of Peel Ports at 9am and we discuss their commitment to Inverclyde.

I have constituency meetings for the rest of the morning and I host the irrepressible WASPI women in my office in the afternoon. It’s been a long week and by close of day I am utterly exhausted. There will be no alarm clock ringing tomorrow morning (it’s still the best job in the world).