An unnamed Conservative MSP has told the Herald the Scottish Conservatives do not feature on David Cameron’s radar.
An unnamed Conservative MSP has told the Herald the Scottish Conservatives do not feature on David Cameron’s radar after he seemingly undermined the party’s leader at Holyrood over a date for the referendum on independence.
With Ruth Davidson MSP having been fiercely loyal in calling for a vote as soon as possible, on Tuesday evening the prime minister used a reception at the Scotland Office in London to state he was now “not fussed” about the date.
The development has led some Conservatives in Scotland to accuse Cameron of hanging Davidson out to dry.
Whilst Davidson herself has publicly remained loyal to the PM, in private Conservative colleagues have expressed concerns.
The Herald quotes what it describes as a “senior” Tory MSP as saying:
“The real significance of this is David Cameron clearly doesn’t think he has done anything wrong because the Scottish Tories are such an irrelevance we are just not on his radar. This was not wilful or deliberate or even careless.
“It just showed it did not occur to him the view of the Scottish party or its leader might even matter.”
He goes on this morning to quote another as declaring:
“There is absolutely no communication from London. It’s ridiculous. Even the Liberal Democrats are better at this.”
The unease at the prime minister’s posturing comes just two months after he seemingly undermined Davidson by hinting at further powers for the Scottish Parliament despite her objections to it.
• The Tories in Scotland: A tale of two parties 20 Mar 2012
With Lib Dem Scottish secretary, Michael Moore, arguing the date of a referendum need not be a “barrier to an agreement” between Westminster and Holyrood, the SNP have seized upon the latest u-turning.
Pete Wishart MP, the party’s spokesman on the Constitution at Westminster, declared:
“David Cameron’s cave-in on the date of the referendum left the Scottish Secretary and indeed his own Scottish leader looking very silly – and Michael Moore has now fallen into line.
“The Westminster government’s insistence the referendum had to be in 2013 was clearly all a big act.
“Only last month Michael Moore was warning about waiting until 2014. He is left looking very silly, as his Tory warnings over the date are exposed as a sham.
“Where does the prime minister’s ‘Dover Declaration’ leave the Scottish Tories? Ruth Davidson has been undermined again by David Cameron.”