Readers'letters: Labour is offering Scotland very little

Former prime minister Gordon Brown, Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and Scottish Labour leader Anas SarwarFormer prime minister Gordon Brown, Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar
Former prime minister Gordon Brown, Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar
Labour is not transferring any meaningful powers to Scotland as claimed by Ian Murray, (News, 8 December) but have rolled back on previous commitments.

Gordon Brown promised “near federal” powers in his effort to save the Union in 2014 and in 2019 the Labour manifesto promised devolution of employment law and unlimited borrowing powers for Scotland.

Labour’s proposals don’t include issues of EU membership, trade deals or immigration, allowing Scotland to recruit more foreign workers to deal with staff shortages in our health service and tourist industries– all the actual powers that would help Scotland’s economy.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

According to the UK’s leading pollster, Prof John Curtice, Labour “had to give up” hopes of winning seats in Scotland to pursue pro-Brexit votes in the north of England.

Labour’s idea of democracy is that a majority of seats at Westminster gives them a mandate to change powers in the UK but a majority of seats at Holyrood in favour of Scotland holding a referendum on our future is not allowed.

As well as increased support for independence, the latest Ipsos /STV poll showed that 53 per cent of voters in Scotland would vote for the SNP in a de facto referendum at the next general election and approval ratings for Anas Sarwar have fallen by eight per cent since May while Keir Starmer has a minus 13 per cent rating in Scotland.

Independence will happen long before Labour abolishes the Lords.

Fraser Grant, Edinburgh

Brown’s promise

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Ian Murray is seriously deluded if he thinks that the recycled promises of Gordon Brown and the patent insincerity of his party leader have any resonance with the Scottish public.

Labour, which should change its name to the Chancers and Careerist party, has been promising to abolish the House of Lords for the past 100 years while continuing to stuff the place with mediocrities and political retreads, claiming £350 a day in expenses just for turning up.

Keir Starmer wants to appeal to 'Red Wall' voters in the north of England so has squashed any idea of reversing Brexit, which has already done considerable harm to the economy.

Is Murray happy about his party's failure to support frontline workers who were all worth clapping during Covid but are not now apparently deserving of living wages?

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

As for ranting about 'morally bankrupt Tories', they are not so immoral that his party isn't running several councils in coalition with them.

As for Scotland needing and wanting change, he's right. The polls show an increase in support for independence and the bounce that Labour has is confined to England.

Even if he retains his seat it's unlikely any of today's Scottish Labour party will be joining him soon.

Marjorie Thompson, Edinburgh

State of nation

Jim Taylor (Letters, 7 December) calls Great Britain a 'voluntary partnership'. It is more than that. In 1707, two separate countries agreed to form one state 'for ever'.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Scotland and England are not partners; they ceased to exist as separate states, although the names persist.

In the same issue, Leah Gunn Barrett claimed that the UK Supreme Court (she calls it 'English', but the decision was read out by Lord Reed, the President who is Scottish) declared that Scotland is not an equal partner in the Union but a mere English colony.

The Court did no such thing; in fact it made it clear that Scotland is not a colony.Ms Barrett has let her enthusiasm for Scottish independence overrule sound judgement and common sense.

Steuart Campbell, Edinburgh

Write to the Edinburgh Evening News

We welcome your thoughts. Write to [email protected] including name, address and phone number – we won't print full details. Keep letters under 300 words, with no attachments. If referring to an article, include date, page number and heading.


Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.