Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 27 March 2015
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.
Referendum vow: New research from Edinburgh University contradicts claims by Alex Salmond that the pre-referendum pledge given by Westminster parties, decided the outcome of the referendum. A YouGov survey shows 3.4% of no votes were decided by the vow. The majority of Scottish-born voters voted to leave the UK with those from other parts of the UK and elsewhere voting to stay. (The Herald page 6, The Scotsman page 10, The Telegraph page 1, The Times page 10, Scottish Daily Express page 2, Daily Recordpage 10, The Sun page 2, Scottish Daily Mail page 8, Press and Journal page 14, The Courier page 18)
Gordon Brown: During his final speech in Westminster, Gordon Brown claimed that he would “fight and fight and fight again” to save the Union, accusing David Cameron of mimicking nationalist tactics to divide Scotland and England. (The Herald page 6, The Scotsman page 11, Scottish Daily Mail page 8, The Courier page 21)
Dodgy dossier: The SNP has been accused of publishing “fiddled figures” that predicted how the economy would perform under independence. Labour deputy leader Kezia Dugdale accused Nicola Sturgeon’s economic plan of being “a fundamental untruth and staggeringly dishonest”. (The Herald page 6, The Times page 10, Scottish Daily Expresspage 2, Daily Record page 14, The Sun page 2, Press and Journal page 14, The Courier page 19)
Lindsay McIntosh in The Times admires Ruth Davidson’s question at First Minister’s Questions: “When will the SNP branch office, rein in its foreign office?” – a reference to Alex Salmond’s activities south of the border. She claims that Salmond could put-off voters in the west of Scotland.
TV interviews: Under intense questioning from Jeremy Paxman, David Cameron failed to spell out where another £10 billion of planned Conservative welfare cuts would come from. Ed Milliband was also pressed on the issue of immigration and the SNP’s “blood money” as well as his relationship with his brother. (The Herald page 7, The Scotsman page 5, The Telegraph page 10, The Times page 8, Scottish Daily Mail page 10, The Guardianpage 1, The Courier page 21)
Alex Salmond: Labour and Conservative representatives in Holyrood joined to attack the SNP, claiming that while Alex Salmond made statements on TV about the economy, defence and tax, Nicola Sturgeon struggled to answer questions about public service funding at Holyrood. (The Scotsman page 10, The Telegraph page 17)
Alan Cochrane in The Telegraph suggests that Nicola Sturgeon may not enjoy Alex Salmond’s “boastful and bibulous progress” around the TV studios of the UK, claiming that he may take the glory out of the SNP’s general election campaign before it begins.
Scottish Labour: Kenny Farquharson in The Scotsman argues that in order to win back a proportion of the SNP’s new support base, Labour have to convince people that the party they used to support, still represents them.
SNP funding boost: Speculation that the SNP could replace the Liberal Democrats as the third largest party in Westminster following the General Election could lead to a multi-million pound taxpayer funded windfall for the party. (The Herald page 1)
SNP youth conversion: Labour MP Michaels McCann accused the SNP of using its youth wing to “brainwash” schoolchildren into the Nationalist movement. (The Herald page 6)
Boost for women: A report by Professor Lesley Sawers of the Scottish Business Board claims that a focused gender plan is required to boost the role of women in the Scottish economy. (The Herald page 6, Press and Journal page 35)
Oil: Plans by Royal Shell and Taqa to axe hundreds of jobs have caused a union to warn of a potential health and safety disaster through the switching to even-time offshore shift patterns. (The Herald page 10, The National page 8, Scottish Daily Express page 8, Daily Record page 2, The Sun page 2, Scottish Daily Mail page 39, The Guardian page 35, Press and Journal page 32, The Courier page 31)
Polish: Poles in Scotland have been shown to the most “economically active” in the country, according to new analysis of census data. (The Scotsman page 12)
Energy Market: Following closure of Scotland’s largest coal-fired power station, an inquiry will be made by MSPs into the security of Scotland’s energy supply. (The National page 8, Daily Record page 2, The Courier page 18)
Blood scandal: Nicola Sturgeon has pledged her “absolute support” for victims of the 1970s blood transfusion scandal in which individuals were given blood infected with hepatitis C and HIV and has met with those involved to discuss compensation. (The Herald page 5, The Scotsman page 8, The Telegraph page 17, The National page 4, The Sun page 2, Scottish Daily Mail page 2)
HS3: Extending high-speed rail into Scotland could cost the taxpayer £10 billion it has been revealed after the country’s infrastructure minister insisted that extending the project north of the border was “absolutely essential” (The Herald page 12)
School performance: The only state-funded school in Scotland, not under council control, has claimed the title of the country’s best performing secondary in the public sector. (The Herald page 8)
Police: Police in Grampian, Tayside and the Highlands and Islands have called for a “bottom-up” review of how resources are distributed, cautioning against a “one-size-fits-all” national approach law enforcement. (The Herald page 3
Revenge porn: A consultation has been launched to decide whether new legislation is required to tackle the problem of so-called “revenge porn”. (The Herald page 6, The Scotsman page 14, The Sun page 2, Scottish Daily Mail page 30)