Reform Scotland News: 14 May 2014

Daily Political Newspaper Summary:  14th May 2014

All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined.  In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News



Commonwealth Games:  The chief executive of Glasgow 2014 has apologised after technical issues hindered the sale of 100,000 extra tickets for the Commonwealth Games for a second day.  The organisation closed its ticket website and phone line yesterday and it is not yet known when tickets will be back on sale. (Scotsman page 1, Times page 19, Herald page 9, Sun page 1, Record page 1, Express page 9, Telegraph page 9, Mail page 5, Courier page 15)


War crimes: The UK is to face an investigation by the International Criminal Court over allegations that forces were involved in the “systematic abuse” of Iraqi prisoners. (Scotsman page 1 , Herald page 1 , Telegraph page 4, Mail page 4, Guardian page 1)


“Buried” Opinion poll: Kelly Brown, who works for Ipsos Mori, has sent a letter to the media claiming that an opinion poll on independence was commissioned by the UK Cabinet Office, but they have not published the results as they showed the ‘yes’ vote was “soaring”.  (Scotsman page 11, Sun page 2, P&J page 13)


TNS Scotland poll: An opinion poll by TNS Scotland has put the No vote at 42 per cent and Yes at 30 per cent with don’t knows at 28 per cent. (Herald page 1, Record page 2)


Ukraine & Scotland: Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine are reportedly calling on Alex Salmond to help explain their case to the west in “plain English”. (Herald page 3, Sun page 2)


Ukip: Ukip is facing a “cash-for-Euro-seats” scandal following allegations that the party favoured wealthy MEP candidates. Two of the leading candidates for this month’s European elections and the partner of a third reportedly donated or lent the party tens of thousands of pounds around the time they were selected for safe seats. (Times page 1)


Lord Tebbit: Lord Tebbit has said that the Tories should have dropped the “Conservative title in Scotland long ago” echoing proposals put forward by Murdo Fraser in his 2011 Scottish leadership campaign. (Sun page 13)


Deutsche Bank: Deutsche Bank has suggested that uncertainty over currency and the question of whether Scotland would take its fair share of national debt could lead to a financial exodus if Scotland becomes independent. (Express page 1, Mail page 1)


General election: George Kerevan in the Scotsman and Ian Bell in the Herald comment on recent opinion polls placing Labour and the Conservatives neck and neck ahead of the 2015 General Election.


The Union: Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael argues in the Scotsman why he believes Scotland should remain part of the UK.


Independence: SNP MEP candidate Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh explains in the Record why she supports independence.


Better Together: Alan Cochrane in the Telegraph comments that recent errors by Alex Salmond have improved the outlook for the Better Together campaign.


Patriotism: John Reid in the Mail argues that it is not unpatriotic to vote no in the independence referendum.




Pfizer: Ian Read, Pfizer’s chief executive, yesterday told MPs that a potential merger with AstraZeneca would lead to job losses, but pledged to keep 20 per cent of its global research and development workforce in the UK. (Scotsman page 8, Herald page 6, Sun page 8, FT page 1, Mail page 10, Guardian page 6, Simon Jenkins in the Guardian, Courier page 22)


House prices: New house price figures have shown that the average price of a property in Scotland is now £161,873, only 2.4% below the pre-recession peak of April 2008. (Herald page 8, Sun page 8, Express page 4)


60p rate: According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, more than 50,000 people earning between £100,000 and £120,000 are paying a 60p income tax rate on that £20,000. (Telegraph page 1)



Police report: Opposition MSPs on the Scottish Parliament’s public audit committee have accused the SNP of trying to block their criticism of how the merger of Scotland’s police forces had been handled. (Scotsman page 9, Times page 1, Herald page 6, Sun page 2, Express page 2, Telegraph page 1, Mail page 1)



Edinburgh trams: Tram fares in Edinburgh have been increased before passengers have started using them.  (Scotsman page 3, Times page 9, Sun page 8, Record page 3, Mail page 7, Courier page 13)


Local Government

Aberdeen City: Labour’s group leader and Aberdeen City Council leader, Barry Crockett,  has commented that he was “stabbed in the back” following a vote on Monday to replace him with his colleague Jenny Laing. (P&J page 1)