MALVERN’S MP Harriett Baldwin has seen her attempt to solve the controversial ‘West Lothian Question’ have taken a step forward in the House of Commons.

The term relates to the constitutional anomaly created by the devolution of power to Scotland.

There have been concerns that MPs in Westminster are not able to vote on certain matters – such as education policy affecting Scotland – but their Scottish colleagues are able to vote on the corresponding English legislation.

After more than three hours of Commons debate on Friday (February 11), Mrs Baldwin’s Legislation (Territorial Extent) Bill won enough votes to advance through a second reading and into the committee stage.

Notables such as current Foreign Secretary William Hague and former Scottish Secretary Malcolm Rifkind have attempted to raise this issue in the House in the last decade.

The Conservative Party manifesto had aimed to address the issue, but it was replaced in the Coalition agreement by a plan to hold a commission - something that has not happened to date.

Mrs Baldwin said: “This is an important day for those who have battled to find a solution to the West Lothian Question. My bill aims to take the first steps towards clarifying legislation in all four countries and I am grateful that colleagues were able to support this bill and allow it to continue into committee.”

She added: “For constitutional experts, this is another important moment and from the level of debate in the chamber, I am sure there is much more that needs to be discussed.

“I am pleased I am able to make this small contribution to decades of debate concerning how our laws work across the whole of the UK.”

During the commons debate Forest of Dean MP Mark Harper had urged Mrs Baldwin to withdraw her bill.

He voiced concerns that it could prejudge the commission’s examination of the West Lothian Question.