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Pete Wishart, the SNP’s spokeperson on House of Commons matters, told Jacob Rees-Mogg in the Commons that his comment about Douglas Ross (see 10.19am) showed how little respect Westminster Tories had for Scotland. He said:
The Scottish Tories know exactly how the rest of Scotland feels, as the leader of the house poured his scorn and contempt upon them last night. According to him, the democratically elected Scottish Tory leader is an insignificant figure, a lightweight, a nobody – presumably just like every single Tory MSP who agrees with their Scottish leader.
The Scottish Tories are supposed to be the Praetorian guard of the precious union and the leader of the house has just undermined them and thrown them under the proverbial bus. If this is how the government even treats the Scottish Tories, why should the Scottish people even entertain being any part of their useless union?
Everybody understands, on all sides of the house, that people were obeying the rules and that these rules were very hard for people to obey. I received a message last night was from a friend of mine who was unable to go to the funeral of his two-year-old granddaughter. One cannot hear these stories without grieving for people who suffered. Decisions were taken at the beginning of the pandemic that affected people up and down the country and they were very hard.
And we must consider, as this goes to an inquiry and we look into what happened with Covid, whether all those regulations were proportionate, or whether it was too hard on people.