THE Scottish Tories, lost for attack lines amid the omnishambles at Westminster, have launched yet another empty attack on the First Minister. Who could have guessed?!
Nicola Sturgeon is currently calling for a General Election, as the UK sees its third prime minister in seven weeks. She called it “preposterous democratically” for Rishi Sunak to now govern without an election.
It would seem pretty fair to give the people a say during this complete mess … but the Tories clearly don’t want to lose power as polls show Labour as far as 36 points ahead.
So as surveys show Douglas Ross’s party being totally wiped out north of the Border, they’re flailing around looking for any shaped stick to beat the SNP with.
Russell Findlay, a Tory MSP for the West Scotland region, branded the FM a “shameful hypocrite” for wanting an election – arguing that she herself did not call a vote after being made FM in the wake of Alex Salmond resigning.
He claimed that “for years” she governed “without ever attempting to call an election” … but failed to point out that just a few months after she became leader, the SNP won a record 56 out of 59 Scottish seats in the Westminster election. Just a year later she formed a minority government at Holyrood.
Findlay also failed to note the totally unprecedented state of having a PM last just 49 days in office, and predictions that the Tories are so widely disliked right now that they could be replaced as the official opposition by the SNP at Westminster. We are in totally uncharted waters here.
"Nicola Sturgeon must have realised this grubby political attack would backfire instantly,” he claimed. “It seems like this is just another attempt by the SNP to provoke grievance with the UK Government.”
In reality, it would be the Scottish Tories attack line which would “backfire”. With the majority of the public wanting an election, it's surely no surprise.
Ruth Davidson, whose relationship with democracy is now surely questionable given her seat in the House of Lords, went with a similar criticism to Findlay.
READ MORE: Ruth Davidson does nothing about 'reforming House of Lords' in one year
She turned her fire on the Daily Record for attacking Sunak with a front page reading: “His own party rejected him a matter of weeks ago but as the only candidate who had the support of just 100 Conservative MPs, Rishi Sunak is set to become Britain’s new Prime Minister: Death of democracy.”
The former Scottish Tory chief tweeted: “There was no such front page in 2007 when Brown became PM without a vote (no GE til 2010) or in 2014 when Nicola Sturgeon became FM without a vote (no Scottish elex til 2016). It’s **almost** as if their pearl clutching sanctimony is actually partisanship.”
SNP MP Joanna Cherry KC was ready to take apart the Baroness’s argument.
“Perhaps that’s because their readership had actually voted for Gordon Brown & Nicola Sturgeon’s parties in considerable numbers & trusted them & didn’t fear their heartless policies?” the MP wrote back. “I think we all know who’s doing the pearl clutching here.”
“Ah yes, 3 PMs in 1 year is definitely pearl clutching, and definitely not a sign of a party and country in disarray,” added another commenter.
We can’t see this attack line sticking anytime soon. Want to go back to other smash hits, such as outrage over “detestgate” instead?
Mhairi Black (below), the SNP's shadow Scotland secretary, summed it up perfectly.
“While the public have been demanding a clean start with a General Election, Douglas Ross and his MPs have been running scared of democracy, rushing back in line to put party before country," she said.
“Rishi Sunak and his government cannot go on without a mandate from the people, it’s now incumbent on Tory MPs to do their democratic duty by demanding the Prime Minister calls a General Election.
“The situation is a democratic disgrace, one that shames the UK and makes a mockery of our democracy - this UK government’s position is untenable and cannot be allowed to limp on and impose a new wave of Tory austerity without any mandate."
That says it all.