Downing Street has tried to clarify Johnson's statement but Scottish politicians are calling it an outrage.
Scottish politicians are furious after Boris Johnson called Scottish devolution a ‘disaster north of the border’. Johnson made the outrageous comment during a Zoom call with Conservative MPs.
Johnson calls Scottish devolution ‘a disaster’
Boris Johnson is now under attack after he reportedly said during the virtual meeting that devolution in Scotland was Tony Blair’s ‘biggest mistake’. The comment has sparked outrage of both Scottish National Party and Labour. Downing Street sources have not denied Johnson’s comments but tried to explain Johnson’s point, saying that the remarks referred to SNP mismanagement. “The PM has always supported devolution but Tony Blair failed to foresee the rise of separatists in Scotland… And leaving the EU means we must strengthen and protect the UK economy with the UK Internal Market Bill. Devolution is great – but not when it’s used by separatists and nationalists to break up the UK.”
Scotland’s Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon took it on Twitter to show disdain towards Boris Johnson’s comments.
Worth bookmarking these PM comments for the next time Tories say they’re not a threat to the powers of the Scottish Parliament – or, even more incredibly, that they support devolving more powers. The only way to protect & strengthen @ScotParl is with independence. https://t.co/Hk7DqoFeuY
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) November 16, 2020
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross immediately tweeted in response to Johnson’s comment: “Devolution has not been a disaster… The SNP’s non-stop obsession with another referendum – above jobs, schools and everything else – has been a disaster.”
Labour MP Ian Murray responded to Johnson saying devolution was one of his party ‘proudest achievements’. He concluded: “This confirms that Boris Johnson doesn’t believe in devolution and would put the future of the United Kingdom at risk… His Government should have been working in partnership with the devolved governments during this crisis. Instead, people across the UK have been paying the price for his failings”.