"My constituents do not believe it is fair that they should face a constitutional discrimination as well as meeting additional costs which identical people in Scotland, and to a lesser extent in Wales, do not face. This is the English Question." This is an extract from a speech delivered today by Labour backbencher Frank Field at the University of Hertfordshire and probably picked out of a press release by a large majority of the media. Whether the current system of devolved governments is, as Field argues, "one of the festering sores in English politics" is a big question. I have seen no opinion poll data to back this up and have not seen it high on the news or public agenda, in fact it is only mentioned when comparing health care, prescription charges and student fees but not seldom is it placed in a wider context. So this may be a personal campaign of Frank Field's that he wishes to promote, and this is a very good way of constructing the argument. While Labour are already in decline in Scotland and Wales, Brown may be counting on the heartland of Britain to retain loyal. Field argues that it is these voters who may "defect to the Tories or British National Party" unless the English are given a parliament. Of course Field does not back this up, basing it on inferences to his constituency, nor can he state to the voters that an English parliament would redress the imbalances in disparities, but it is a very persuasive argument that hits Brown where it currently hurts the post: how to recapture the heartlands of Britain.