Wednesday’s SNP West­min­ster walk­out pro­voked lots of in­ter­est. Here is a se­lec­tion of your let­ters

The Scotsman - - Perspective / Letters To The Editor - JOHN MILNE Ard­gowan Drive, Ud­dingston IAN GIB­SON, Gif­ford, East Loth­ian STE­WART CLARK Easter Road , Ed­in­burgh

I had hoped that whe­niun folded yes­ter­day’ s edi­tion of The Scots­man I would read ban­ner head­lines ‘Ruth David­son slams West­min­ster Gov­ern­ment’s treat­ment of Scot­land’.

It has, how­ever, come as no sur­prise to me that I did not. In­stead, all we got was a pre­dictable knee-jerk re­ac­tion from her party’s spokesman (Con­ser­va­tive MP Dou­glas Ross con­demned the SNP go­ing down a “pa­thetic the­atri­cal route)”.

It would be ironic in­deed if the si­lence of the leader of the Scot­tish Con­ser­va­tive and Union­ist Party were to con­trib­ute in no small way to the break-up of the United King­dom, the preser­va­tion of which I cam­paigned for in 2014. I am so em­bar­rassed as a born and bred Scot with close rel­a­tives down South, with the ridicu­lous be­hav­iour of the SNP MPS in the House of Com­mons at PMQS on Wednesday.

This is noth­ing other than grab­bing at straws in vain to keep their sin­gle pur­pose pol­icy, ie break­ing up our Union!

This bunch of syco­phants need an in­jec­tion of real­ity. The great ma­jor­ity of Scots have had enough of their shenani­gans. Good­ness knows how much it costs us to keep this bunch in of­fice, their time has come. It is dis­ap­point­ing that Ed­in­burgh MPS Chris­tine Jar­dine and Ian Mur­ray at­tack the SNP walk out as a stunt and griev­ance pol­i­tics (Scots­man, 14 June) when the SNP were stand­ing up for democ­racy.

If the SNP walk out was or­ches­trated, then the Speaker, John Ber­cow, was a will­ing ac­com­plice as he ig­nored par­lia­ment’s rules. If it was a stunt, then so was the Tory en­gi­neered lack of de­bate on the House of Lords Brexit amend­ments.

Al­low­ing 15 min­utes to deal with de­volved is­sues with no Scot­tish speak­ers is an af­front to democ­racy and David Mundell should re­sign af­ter fail­ing to keep his prom­ises.

At least the SNP has put the de­vo­lu­tion power grab on the UK agenda af­ter the is­sue has been ig­nored by Theresa May. Lon­don-based broad­cast­ers, the Tory press and even Scot­tish tabloids kept the 15 minute in­sult off the front pages.

When the Tories re­fused to set up a Scot­tish se­lect com­mit­tee in 1987, Don­ald De­war marched Scot­tish Labour MPS out of the Com­mons. They were joined by SNP and Scot­tish Lib­eral MPS but po­lit­i­cal trib­al­ism stopped oth­ers from back­ing the SNP in de­fence of the de­vo­lu­tion set­tle­ment.

Guer­rilla-type ac­tions are needed when democ­racy is un­der threat and re­gard­less of party af­fil­i­a­tion we need to unite against the Tory dis­re­gard of the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment and on Scot­land’s choice to re­main in Europe.

When the ar­chi­tect of The Vow that stalled the self-gov­ern­ment cam­paign in 2014 now sup­ports in­de­pen­dence then the tide is surely turn­ing. FRASER GRANT War­ren­der Park Road, Ed­in­burgh The staged walk­out at West­min­ster achieved what the SNP wanted in get­ting pub­lic­ity for the in­de­pen­dence cause in what can be de­scribed as an or­ches­trated ‘pub­lic­ity grab’.

Any gains from this pub­lic­ity was lost with the sight of SNP MPS lin­ing up and grin­ning for ‘self­ies’ to un­der­line what was just a cheap stunt. DENNIS FORBES GRATTAN

Bucks­burn, Aberdeen On Tuesday, Ni­cola Stur­geon de­clared the EU With­drawal Bill de­bate an af­front to de­vo­lu­tion. Her ‘out­rage’ was im­me­di­ately cut and pasted by her loyal acolytes who shouted into the echo cham­ber of so­cial me­dia and heard back cries from the die-hard sep­a­ratists who stalk the in­ter­net for SNP MPS to aban­don West­min­ster.

On Wednesday, Ian Black­ford played to his au­di­ence by oblig­ing them with a grand ges­ture. In do­ing so he lost the op­por­tu­nity to ask the very ques­tions he and his fel­low SNP MPS had wanted the Prime Min­is­ter to an­swer.

A Scot­tish MP, like all other MPS, is elected to rep­re­sent the in­ter­ests of their con­stituents not to pass on griev­ances from Holy­rood or pan­der to the de­mands of their hard-core sup­port­ers. At very least they should turn up to their place of work and not flounce out to get a bit of at­ten­tion.

If SNP MPS can’t or won’t work within the bounds that all other MPS seem to be able to cope with then they should re­sign their seats en masse and not con­test the re­sult­ing by-elec­tions. No one should be un­der any il­lu­sions about the SNP’S pri­mary goal with its lat­est an­tics in walk­ing out dur­ing Prime Min­is­ter’s Ques­tions at West­min­ster.

The griev­ance over Brexit pow­ers is largely man­u­fac­tured, by an SNP gov­ern­ment de­ter­mined to cre­ate a con­sti­tu­tional cri­sis when none is needed, in the hope of stir­ring ill feel­ing in Scot­land.

The so called ‘power grab’ is not of any real con­cern to the SNP lead­ers, given they would hap­pily give all the pow­ers in dis­pute back to Brus­sels if they got their way and sep­a­rated from the UK only to re­join the EU.

Iron­i­cally, how­ever, the re­cent SNP eco­nomic re­think, points to a decade or more be­fore Scot­land could even con­tem­plate ap­ply­ing for EU mem­ber­ship, so its in­de­pen­dence of­fer would leave us out­side the UK and the EU.

March­ing out of the House of Com­mons sim­ply plays to the SNP faith­ful, while the rest of Scot­land is left dis­mayed. KEITH HOW­ELL West Lin­ton, Pee­b­lesshire There are some things at which the SNP excel. They are su­perb at pos­tur­ing, in­fan­tile, Pri­mary One an­tics and, when they are in a corner, stunts in place of serous pol­i­tics.

In 1979, for ex­am­ple they voted down Jim Cal­laghan and ush­ered in 13 years of Mar­garet Thatcher in an act of po­lit­i­cal hara-kiri, un­prece­dented be­fore or since.

They lost al­most ev­ery seat they held at the next elec­tion. That act was meant to im­press, no doubt, the zealot fringe of the SNP, much as was the PMQ an­tics on Wednesday. I fear many of their ex­ist­ing MPS will share the same fate as their pre­de­ces­sors in 1979.

The walk-out at PMQ was about as spon­ta­neous as the na­tion­al­ist march on the BBC’S Glas­gow of­fices. Steeped in self­ish­ness, those mps stopped mem­bers with gen­uine con­cerns get­ting a chance to speak and was shame­ful and em­bar­rass­ing. There are other things at which they are not so good. For ex­am­ple, run­ning the NHS, trans­port and the econ­omy.

As al­ways, the ul­ti­mate sweet SNP irony is that John Swin­ney once called the dis­rup­tions by the SSP at Holy­rood “stunts’’. ALEXAN­DER MCKAY New Cut Rigg, Ed­in­burgh With the Tories in com­plete dis­ar­ray over Brexit and Labour dis­play­ing a pa­thetic lack of fight against a mor­tally wounded gov­ern­ment, at least the SNP are show­ing en­cour­ag­ing party unity.

By re­fus­ing to al­low their coun­try to be steam­rollered into a Brexit im­passe they are, at least, re­flect­ing Scot­land’s over­whelm­ing vote in favour of re­main­ing in the EU. DOUGIE MITCHELL Cra­mond, Ed­in­burgh Sup­port­ers of in­de­pen­dence must be griev­ing to­day for the demise, at the last elec­tion, of An­gus Robertson as SNP leader at West­min­ster. Mr Robertson could do in­dig­na­tion and faux out­rage like no other. Ian Black­ford is but a pale im­i­ta­tion. His pre-planned ex­pul­sion from the house had more of an am­a­teur dra­matic so­ci­ety feel to it, as against the full blown hys­ter­i­cal whinge­ing that earned Mr Robertson so much re­spect among like minded peo­ple. HOWARD LEWIS Hailes Av­enue, Ed­in­burgh

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