Tory leadership hopeful and likely future Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated that “government by a Scot is just not conceivable in the current constitutional context”, in a diary piece published in the Spectator in 2005.
In this further example of Johnson’s contempt for Scotland, recently uncovered by The Scotsman, the former Foreign Secretary also declared that Gordon Brown suffered from “a personal political disability” because he represented a Scottish constituency at Westminster.
Writing ahead of the 2005 general election, Johnson railed against the possibility of Brown replacing Tony Blair as Labour leader and consequently Prime Minister, claiming it was “not just because he is a gloomadon-popping, interfering, high-taxing complicator of life, but mainly because he is a Scot, and government by a Scot is just not conceivable in the current constitutional context.”
Johnson seemed wholly ignorant of the fact that Tony Blair was born and educated in Edinburgh.
His tirade continued:
“Not only is Scotland full of rotten boroughs, where Labour MPs are returned by relatively tiny electorates but, as I never tire of saying, we English MPs can be overruled by Scottish MPs on very controversial questions, affecting our constituents, when we have no corresponding say over those questions in Scotland, and those Scottish MPs themselves have no say over those questions, so that John Reid, Scottish health secretary for the so-called UK, has no say over health questions in so far as they affect his own constituents.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon MSP Tweeted:
“We think the same about him as he thinks about us!”
Kenneth Gibson MSP added:
“If Mr Johnson had made these comments about any racial or religious minority he would be in deep water. However, it seems you can say anything about the Scots and Scotland – allegedly an ‘equal partner’ in the union – without a murmur.
“I wonder what Michael Gove, born brought up and educated in Scotland and Johnson’s chief rival thinks about his ‘friend’s’ opinions?
“More to the point, what is the view of the 13 Tory MPs who represent Scottish constituencies? No doubt Ross Thomson MP will continue his dog-like devotion to his anti-Scottish ‘hero’ but Scottish voters are less likely to be impressed.”
Johnson is currently leading the race to replace Theresa May as Prime Minister after she stepped down on 10 June, topping the second ballot of MPs with 126 votes.