Pleas by the SNP for the government to step back from “breaking the 20-year-old devolution settlement” were rebuffed by the prime minister, who vowed to plough ahead.
Westminster can override the opinion – triggered by Edinburgh’s claims of a London power-grab – but it would spark the biggest political crisis since the Scottish Parliament was set up in 1999.
In the Commons, Ms May insisted the devolution proposals in the bill were necessary to “maintain the integrity of our own common market”.
Later, in an inflammatory move, she backed a Scottish Tory MP’s claim that Labour and the Lib Dems has become “’midwives” to the SNP’s “crusade to tear apart the Union”.
An angry Ian Blackford, the SNP Westminster leader, said: “The prime minister should respect the vote that took place.
“The Tories are seeking to veto the democratic will of the Scottish parliament. This is absolutely unprecedented.
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“If this government forces through the legislation without the consent of the Scottish parliament, the prime minister will be doing so in the full knowledge that they are breaking the 20-year-old devolution settlement.”
But Ms May insisted: “What the bill does is set out a mechanism that respects devolution and lets us maintain the integrity of our own common market as we work out the long term solution.
“I think this is a reasonable and sensible way forward.”