Dear Orkney News,
At the time of writing (Tuesday 5th December), Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson has released a statement in which she explicitly sides with the DUP against the Prime Minister over the question of the Irish border and a bespoke Brexit deal for Northern Ireland.
Ms Davidson writes the following: “If regulatory alignment in a number of specific areas is the requirement for a frictionless border, then the PM should conclude that this is on a UK wide basis”.
That’s an enormous (but not remotely surprising) volte-face from a person who ran a passionate and articulate campaign to remain in the EU, before buying a first class ticket for doomed ship Brexit.
For her, self always comes before side. But let that sink in. The leader of Tories in Scotland sides with DUP & specifically calls for Scotland not to get differentiated deal which would help our economy and which would recognise that Scotland voted to remain in the EU, and that 90% of Scottish businesses wish to remain in the single market at the very least.
She puts party ideology ahead of Scottish interests, which you’d expect. We can only assume that this is the official Scottish Conservative line, and must call this out for what it is: a deliberate and blatant attempt to weaken Scotland.
The new Scottish MPs have repeatedly failed to live up to their promises to stand up for Scotland. They failed to demand Scotland’s £2.9bn of Barnett Consequentials due after the DUP bung. They voted to trigger Article 50 despite representing constituencies that voted to remain. Last night, they even voted down each and every amendment to the EU withdrawal bill designed to protect the Scottish devolution settlement.
This is an anti-Scottish party that votes against the interests of its own people at every available opportunity and whose leader, when the going gets tough, goes into hiding.
So my question for the Scottish Conservatives is as follows.
“Would you support a differentiated deal that allowed Scotland to remain in the Single Market even if other parts of the UK did not?”
If the answer is “no”, then we have 13 MPs who put party ideology ahead of the interests of the people of Scotland.
So we must ask these supplementary questions: If they cannot stand up for us now, then when? And, quite simply, what are they for?
Alec Ross, Stranraer